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The Ned Kelly Films
A Cultural History of Kelly History
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ISBN 9781841506364
Paperback 132 pages
Published November 2012
Imprint: Intellect
Books by Stephen Gaunson
Books in Film Studies

One of Australia’s most notorious outlaws, Ned Kelly lived on the land from the time of his first arrest at age 14, until police captured him and his Kelly gang a decade later in 1880. Immortalized in a series of onscreen productions, he has since become one of the most resilient screen presences in the history of Australian cinema.

Covering the nine feature films, three miniseries, and two TV movies that have been made about this controversial character, Stephen Gaunson illuminates a central irony: from novels to comics to the branding of the site where he was captured, most cultural representations of Kelly are decidedly lowbrow. But only the films have been condemned for not offering a more serious interpretation of this figure and his historical context. Asking what value we can place on such ‘bad’ historical cinema, Gaunson offers new insights about the textual characteristics of cinematic material and the conditions of film distribution, circulation, and reception.


Table of Contents
List of Figures
The Kelly Films
Chapter 1: ‘Bandits on the margin of the margin’: 1906–1951
Chapter 2: The Hagiographic Bandit: 1960–2003
Chapter 3: New Age Ned: Social Banditry and Romance
Chapter 4: Outlawed: Stringybark and the Jerilderie Letter
Chapter 5: The Noble Bandit: Irish Sympathy and Other Sympathy
Chapter 6: ‘Die Like a Kelly, Son’: Glenrowan and Trial
Appendix: Cast and Crew
Works Cited

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