Valentina Vitali presents the history of Bombay action films, posing new questions about the relationship between movies and their socioecomic context. She considers how action gained prominence as an ingredient in film narrative, one that made it easier to produce and market films. She traces the emergence of the stunt film in the 1920s; examines the presence and function of women in action roles from the mid-1920s to the end of the 1930s; and analyzes the socioecomic factors responsible for the films and for the popularity of figures such as Master Vithal, Ermeline, Fearless Nadia, Dara Singh, and Amitabh Bachchan as well as other, more contemporary figures.
Valentina Vitali is Senior Lecturer in Film Studies at the University of East London. She is editor (with Paul Willemen) of Theorising National Cinema.