Apollo was the ancient god of light and the divine patron of the arts. He is therefore a fitting metaphor for cinematography, which is the modern art of writing with moving light. This book interprets films as visual texts and provides the first systematic theoretical and practical demonstration of the affinities between Greco-Roman literature and the cinema. It examines major themes from classical myth and history such as film portrayals of gods, exemplified by Apollo and the Muses; Oedipus, antiquity's most influential mythic-tragic hero; the question of heroism and patriotism in war; and the representation of women like Helen of Troy and Cleopatra as products of male desire and fantasy. Covering a wide range of European and American directors, genres, and classical authors, this study provides an innovative perspective on the two disciplines of classics and cinema and demonstrates our most influential medium's unlimited range when it adapts ancient texts.

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