Predictive Landscapes

  • K.R. Cornett Department of Radio, Film and Television, Northwestern
Keywords: road movie, 70s, western, New Hollywood Cinema


The popularity of the road film in the 1970s is often attributed to its updating of the Western film genre, an enduring form in Hollywood cinema. This essay argues that a hierarchical understanding of the relationship between the two genres is detrimental to understanding their efficacy. Case studies of two minor films produced outside of the Hollywood studio system reveals the centrality of landscape and spatiality to generic evolution. While the mythology of New Hollywood Cinema touted a reflexive deployment of genres that perpetuated in Hollywood for most of the studio era, these independently produced films endeavored to imagine an alternative to this ideologically dominant system. This article explores the uneasy balance of subversion and citation of genre to gain an understanding of the complex relationship between authorship, production, and hegemonic practices in this transitional era of American film history.

Author Biography

K.R. Cornett, Department of Radio, Film and Television, Northwestern

K.R. Cornett is a lecturer and academic advisor in the department of Radio, Film and Television at Northwestern. She is interested in the politics of everyday life and its representation in American cinema and visual culture. Her dissertation, Out of the Blur of the Background, is an examination of landscape and spatiality in independent American Cinema between 1969 and 1984.

K.R. Cornett est maître de conférence et conseillère académique dans le département de Radio, Film, et Télévision à Northwestern. Elle s’intéresse à la politique de tous les jours et à sa représentation dans le cinéma et la culture visuelle américains. Sa thèse, Out of the Blur of the Background, examine le paysage et la spatialité dans le cinéma américain indépendent entre 1969 et 1984.

How to Cite
Cornett, K. (2018). Predictive Landscapes. Imaginations: Journal of Cross-Cultural Image Studies, 9(1), 41-60.