Lana Turner as Star (Discussion)

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  1. Group 2: Dyer contends that "Turner illustrates three of the ways that stars function cinematically (that is, within the total signifying practice of the cinema industry situated within society as a whole)".
    • What does Dyer mean by "signifying practice"?
    • List those three ways that stars function.
  2. Group 3: What, according to Dyer, is the relationship between glamour and ordinariness?
    • How does the photograph of Ava Gardener and Turner "embracing" (see above) illustrate this contrast?
    • How is it expressed in The Bad and the Beautiful?
  3. Group 4: In general terms, what does haute couture (pronounce "oht koo-toor") connote? How is this specifically embodied in Turner's image—as Dyer argues regarding the Imitation of Life scene in which she meets David Edwards (Dan O'Herlihy)?
  4. Groups 5 and 6: How was Turner’s sexy-ordinary contradiction "crystallized" in four "moments" in her early career?
  5. Group 1: What characterizes Turner’s acting style? How is it disrupted by emotions presented as more "authentic" in Imitation of Life and The B & the B?
    • How does Dyer make the case for the "hysterics in the car" scene as "authentic"? (View video clip.)

External links


  1. Richard Dyer, "Four Films of Lana Turner," Movie 25: 30-52.