"A challenging book...that turns a great deal of theory on masochism and masculinity on its head. In a complex yet intriguing manner, Greven manages to weave together classical mythology, psychoanalytic theory, Mulveyan gaze theory, and textual analysis of several key films of the era...The author delivers thought-provoking readings of these films." (Choice)
"Subtly radical...Greven takes to task the perverse academic gymnastics of theorists who valorize self-destructive and often self-hating displays of masculinity--and especially queerness--as somehow empowering, and offers as a corrective a sensible and cogent critique of the masochistic portrayals of the male body in Hollywood films of the last two decades." (Cineaste)
"Greven has put a very useful perspective on the notion of queer sexualities with this study. Moreover his work provides an excellent rebuttal of the position of several prominent film critiques who deny the usefulness of theory in analyzing cinem...a. Greven vigorously discards the injunction to reject a psychoanalytic basis for examining spectator’s identification with screen images. The readings here are nuanced and powerful and they are admirably supported by psychoanalytic theory." (College Literature)
"When he explores the movies themselves, analyzing text and subtext, directorial choices and scores, lighting and framing, symbolism and defamiliarization, David Greven's postulations are fascinating and often revelatory.... it’s a gift to read his insights and interpretations and then revisit these films after reading such a well-considered exploration of them." (Sacramento Book Review 2010-05-05)
"The principal contribution of this book is the close readings of presentations of manhood in the films Casualties of War, The Silence of the Lambs, Fight Club, The Passion of the Christ, and Brokeback Mountain." (Men and Masculinities 2013-07-13)
"Greven's book is a fine contribution to the fields of film studies, queer studies, and American studies. Each interpretation is provocative, sharply rendered, and vividly detailed. Greven has read widely in contempory psychoanalytic theory..and staked out clear positions in a suggestive argument, with lively, engaging writing."
—Psychoanalysis, Culture, and Society