Angels in America

by Tony Kushner

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Student Question

How does the play Angels in America show the influence of film?

Expert Answers

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I think that this is a very interesting idea.  I would say that the epic style of the drama is reflective of how film, as a genre, has helped to expand the artistic imagination of both viewer and writer.  The idea that a film can convey epics had been something that was in evidence for some time prior to Kushner's work.  In this light, the play is able to take on the form of an epic, spanning different times and conditions, but being unified by the idea of exploring the disintegration of relationships in the modern setting.  The ability to bring out global themes through the problems of individual people is something for which film has become known.  The play does this in much the same way.  Political statements, artistic ideas, and intellectual themes can be explored in the style of an epic, while focusing on the individual narratives.  This is one way in which film has influenced the development of Kushner's drama.

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