The newest volume in the Film Theory in Practice Series, Auteur Theory and My Son John offers a concise introduction to authorship and auteur theory in jargon-free language. The book goes on to show this theory can be deployed to interpret Leo McCarey’s notorious but undervalued film My Son John, which critics deemed a clear-cut failure, and the auteurists declared a masterpiece.
James Morrison traces the development of auteur theory through its emergence in the pages of the French film journal Cahiers du cinéma and the complex permutations it undergoes subsequently. This history will help students and scholars who are eager to learn more about this important area of film theory. The analysis of My Son John shows how auteur theory enables modes of interpretation and discovers levels of meaning otherwise unavailable.