The Elderly (and Middle Aged) in the Movies:
A Bibliography of Materials in the UC Berkeley Library

This is a static page that is no longer maintained

Bazzini, Doris G.; McIntosh, William D
"The aging women in popular film: Underrepresented, unattractive, unfriendly, and unintelligent." Sex Roles, Apr97, Vol. 36 Issue 7/8, p531-543, 13p,
UC users only

Beugnet, Martine
"Screening the old: femininity as old age in contemporary French cinema." Studies in the Literary Imagination Fall2006, Vol. 39 Issue 2, p1-20, 20p
UC users only

Chivers, Sally.
"Baby Jane Grew Up: The Dramatic Intersection of Age with Disability." Canadian Review of American Studies, 2006, Vol. 36 Issue 2, p211-227, 17p
UC users only

Cohen-Shalev, Amir; Marcus, Esther-Lee.
"Golden Years and Silver Screens: Cinematic Representations of Old Age." Journal of Aging, Humanities & the Arts, Mar2007, Vol. 1 Issue 1-2, p85-96, 12p
UC users only

Cohen-Shalev, Amir
"The effect of aging in dramatic realization of old age: The example of Ingmar Bergman." Gerontologist; Dec92, Vol. 32 Issue 6, p739, 5p

Visions of aging : images of the elderly in film / Amir Cohen-Shalev. Brighton [England] ; Portland, Or. : Sussex Academic Press, c2009.
Main (Gardner) Stacks PN1995.9.A433 C64 2009

DeFalco, Amelia
Uncanny subjects : aging in contemporary narrative / Amelia DeFalco. Columbus : Ohio State University Press, c2010.
Main (Gardner) Stacks PN56.O4 D44 2010

Doron, Israel.
"Bringing The Law to the Gerontological Stage: A Different Look at Movies and Old Age." International Journal of Aging & Human Development; 2006, Vol. 62 Issue 3, p237-254, 18p
UC users only

Ello, Linda M.
"Older Adult Issues and Experiences Through the Stories and Images of Film." Journal of Teaching in Social Work, Volume 27, Issue 1 & 2 June 2007 , pages 271 - 282
UC users only

Ferguson, Susan J.
"The Old Maid Stereotype in American Film, 1938 To 1965." Film & History, Dec1991, Vol. 21 Issue 4, p130-144, 15p
UC users only

Fisher, Bradley J.
"Exploring Ageist Stereotypes Through Commercial Motion Pictures." Teaching Sociology, Oct92, Vol. 20 Issue 4, p280-284, 5p
UC users only

Hodges, F. M.
"The penalties of passion and desire: love and the aging male in early 20th-century film." Aging Male; Mar2003, Vol. 6 Issue 1, p18-23, 6p
UC users only

Markson, Elizabeth; Taylor, Carol
"The mirror has two faces." Ageing and Society (2000), 20:137-160
UC users only
"Have changing demographics, increased life expectancy and findings about gender similarities and differences, altered portrayals of older people in American feature films during the past 65 years? We identified 3,038 films made between 1929 and 1995 in which actors and actresses, nominated at least once during their lifetimes for an Oscar award, appeared when aged 60 years or older. Academy Award nominees were selected because they offered a sample of 'notable' performers and an accessible database. We selected an eight per cent random sample for a content analysis of their roles. Throughout this period, men were more likely to be depicted as vigorous, employed and involved in same-gender friendships and adventure (whether as hero or villain). Women remained either peripheral to the action or were portrayed as rich dowagers, wives/mothers, or lonely spinsters. Despite changing gender roles in later life since the 1930s and despite social and economic changes for older Americans (earlier retirement age and better health are but two examples), their film roles have remained remarkably static in age and gender stereotyping. In feature films, the mask of ageing differs by gender. Male masks veil inactivity and physical changes, while female masks reveal ageist and sexist stereotypes."

Mermelstein, David
"Ages of Fear." Variety; 12/14/2009, Vol. 417 Issue 5, pA2-A4, 2p
UC users only
The article examines the difficulties facing older motion picture actors and actresses in finding lead roles in films. The dominant role of young adults in motion picture audiences has led producers to avoid scripts focusing on older or middle-aged persons. Veteran actor Jeff Bridges, whose role in the motion picture "Crazy Heart" is an exception to this trend, notes that the recession means that fewer motion pictures of any kind are being produced.

Nixon, Lois LaCivita
"Aging: A Postmodern Lens." Journal of Aging and Identity, vol. 1, no. 3, pp. 151-64, Sept 1996

Parsons, Elizabeth
"Animating Grandma: The Indices of Age and Agency in Contemporary Children's Films." Journal of Aging, Humanities & the Arts; Sep2007, Vol. 1 Issue 3-4, p221-229, 9p
UC users only

Prochuk, Alana
"Hell is Older People." Bitch Magazine: Feminist Response to Pop Culture; Spring2010, Issue 46, p66-67, 2p
UC users only
The article focuses on the fear of aging among women and the dominance of older women characters in Western horror films. It points out that the fear of aging is not gender-neutral. The fear of aging is attributed to the fact that it is unavoidable. Also noted is the tendency of women to hate the characters instead of acknowledging the fact that aging is the real culprit behind such emotion.

Robinson, Tom, et al.
"Older Characters in Teen Movies from 1980-2006." Educational Gerontology; Aug2009, Vol. 35 Issue 8, p687-711, 25p
UC users only

Roth, Elaine.
"Momophobia: Incapacitated Mothers and Their Adult Children in 1990's Films." Quarterly Review of Film & Video, Apr-Jun2005, Vol. 22 Issue 2, p189-202, 14p
UC users only

Schickel, Richard
"Love Among the Ruins." Time; 12/8/2003, Vol. 162 Issue 23, p76-76
UC users only
Discusses sex in motion pictures between older actors. Focus on the relationship between Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton in the motion picture "Something's Gotta Give"; Comments about the sex scenes by the director of the film Nancy Meyers; Other films past and present that have older actors in sex scenes or scenes containing nudity, such as "The Cooler" and "Calendar Girls.".

Staging age : the performance of age in theatre, dance, and film
Edited by Valerie Barnes Lipscomb and Leni Marshall. New York : Palgrave Macmillan, 2010.
Main (Gardner) Stacks PN1590.A34 S73 2010
Contents: Introduction -- Film. "That younger, fresher woman" : old wives for new (1918) and Hollywood's cult of youth / Heather Addison -- The unconscious of age : performances in psychoanalysis, film and popular culture / E. Ann Kaplan -- Old cops : occupational aging in a film genre / Neal King -- Theatre. Performing female age in Shakespeare's plays / Janet Hill and Valerie Barnes Lipscomb -- Mediating childhood : how child spectators interpret actors' bodies in theatrical media / Jeanne Klein -- "What age am I now? And I? : the science of the aged voice in Beckett's plays / Ruth Pe Palileo -- Molière's Miser, old age, and potency / Allen Wood -- Dance. Old dogs, new tricks : intergenerational dance / Jessica Berson -- Age and the dance artist / Barbara Dickinson -- Still tapping after all these years : age and respect in tap dance / Wendy Oliver.

Stoddard, Karen M.
Saints and shrews : women and aging in American popular film Westport, Conn. : Greenwood Press, c1983.
Main (Gardner) Stacks PN1995.9.W6 S86 1983

Vanden Bosch, James
"Old Age and Loss in Feature Length Films." The Gerontologist, (2003) 43 (3): 430-431.
UC users only

Walsh, Andrea.
"Life Isn't Yet Over": Older Heroines in American Popular Cinema of the 1930s and 1970s/80s." Qualitative Sociology, Spring89, Vol. 12 Issue 1, p72, 24p
UC users only

Weitz, Rose
"Changing the Scripts: Midlife Women’s Sexuality in Contemporary U.S. Film." Sexuality & Culture Volume 14, Number 1, 17-32
UC users only

Woodward, Kathleen.
"Performing Age, Performing Gender." NWSA Journal; Spring2006, Vol. 18 Issue 1, p162-189, 28p
UC users only
Discusses the ways age and gender are performed in film and art by analyzing a popular US film, 'About Schmidt' (2002), and the Belgian film 'Pauline and Paulette' (2001), as well as the alternative views presented in the work of artists Louise Bourgeois, Rachel Rosenthal, and Nettie Harris. The author also looks at her own "youthful ideas about aging" that reflect a sentimentalized view, and she points to ways ageism is a feminist issue.

Yahnke, Robert E.
"Old Age in Feature Length Films." The Gerontologist Volume46, Issue3 Pp. 418.
UC users only

Yahnke, Robert E.
"Selected Filmography of Feature-Length Films on Aging." Gerontologist; Aug99, Vol. 39 Issue 4, p508, 3p
UC users only

Yahnke, Robert E.
"Heroes of Their Own Stories Expressions of Aging in International Cinema." Gerontology & Geriatrics Education; 2005, Vol. 26 Issue 1, p57-76, 20p

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