Understanding Sound Tracks Through Film Theory breaks new ground by redirecting the arguments of foundational texts within film theory to film sound tracks. Walker includes sustained analyses of particular films according to a range of theoretical approaches: psychoanalysis, feminism, genre studies, post-colonialism, and queer theory. The films come from disparate temporal and industrial contexts: from Classical Hollywood Gothic melodrama (Rebecca) to contemporary, critically-acclaimed science fiction (Gravity). Along with sound tracks from canonical American films including The Searchers and To Have and Have Not, Walker analyzes independent Australasian films: examples include Heavenly Creatures, a New Zealand film that uses music to empower its queer female protagonists; and Ten Canoes, the first Australian feature film with a script entirely in Aboriginal languages. Understanding Sound Tracks Through Film Theory thus not only calls new attention to the significance of sound tracks, but also focuses on the sonic power of characters representing those whose voices have all too often been drowned out.
Understanding Sound Tracks Through Film Theory is both rigorous and accessible to all students and scholars with a grasp of cinematic and musical structures. Moreover, the book brings together film studies, musicology, history, politics, and culture and therefore resonates across the liberal arts.