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Distributed for Intellect Ltd

Cindy Sherman’s Office Killer

Another Kind of Monster

One of the twentieth century’s most significant artists, Cindy Sherman has quietly uprooted conventional understandings of portraiture and art, questioning everything from identity to feminism. Critics around the world have taken Sherman’s photographs and extensively examined what lies underneath. However, little critical ink has been spilled on Sherman’s only film, Office Killer, a piece that plays a significant role both in Sherman’s body of work and in American art in the late twentieth century. Dahlia Schweitzer breaks the silence with her trenchant analysis of Office Killer and explores the film on a variety of levels, combating head-on the art world’s reluctance to discuss the movie and arguing instead that it is only through a close reading of the film that we can begin to appreciate the messages underlying all of Sherman’s work.

The first book on this neglected piece of an esteemed artist’s oeuvre, Cindy Sherman’s “Office Killer” rescues the film from critical oblivion and situates it next to the artist’s other iconic works.

208 pages | 30 halftones | 7 x 9 | © 2014

Art: Photography

Film Studies

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Table of Contents


Part 1: Another Kind of Introduction

Why Office Killer Deserves Your Attention (And How It First Grabbed Mine)

Character Reference Guide

Office Killer Plot Synopsis

Part 2: Another kind of Art

Conception: In Art We Trust

Direction: Sherman’s March

Production: The Big Picture

Part 3: Another Kind of Entertainment

How to Look at Office Killer (And What I Missed the First Time)

Part 4: Another Kind of Commentary

Considerations: Cast, Costumes, and Characters

Conversations: Noir, Horror, and Comedy

Considerations: Disease, Technology, and the Workplace

Comparisons: Working Girl, Basic Instinct, and What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?

Part 5: Another Kind of Conclusion

How Office Killer was Absolutely Right about Everything (Yet Still Managed To Fail So Miserably)

Study Guides

Office Killers: Character Crib Notes

Textual Insanity: Relationships to Other Movies

Horrific Experiences: Interviews with Christine Vachon, James Schamus, Todd Thomas, and Tom Kalin

Film Credits and Cast List

Selected References


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