Show Business Film: The Critics' Choice

ISBN 13: 9780823017447

Film: The Critics' Choice

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9780823017447: Film: The Critics' Choice

Lively, compact, and opinionated, Film: The Critics' Choice offers an informative and incisive look at 150 of the finest achievements in cinema of the 20th century, as selected and discussed by some of the finest writers on film. The book is divided into ten chapters, each dedicated to a specific time and place in movie history. Each of the ten chapters is written by an eminent critic (or critics) with specialized knowledge and enthusiasm for the particular area of film about which he or she is writing.

Each chapter consists of an introductory overview, followed by a personal selection of 15 of the critic's favorite films, which are described and dissected in self-contained essays that cover who made the film and why, its artistic features and matters of technical interest, and the broader context in which it was made, as well as the critic's personal reasons for choosing it.

Vividly written and lavishly illustrated with 300 stills from the films, Film: The Critics' Choice covers not only the well-known classics, both silent and talkie, but also those undeservedly obscure. In addition, it recognizes and salutes the artistic value and cultural importance of films throughout the world, from the United States, England, France, Germany, and Sweden to Portugal, The Philippines, China, Japan, Mexico, Turkey, Mali, Iran, and elsewhere.

Complete with Foreword by Italian filming master Bernardo Bertolucci and edited by Geoff Andrew, author and leading British film critic for over 15 years, the book includes chapters by:

* David Bordwell, author and instructor of the history and theory of cinema at the University of Wisconsin (Madison, WI)
* David Thomson, author, freelance critic, and essayist for such publications as The New York Times and Film Comment (San Francisco, CA)
* Philip French, author and film critic for the London Observer since 1978 (London, England)
* Amy Taubin, author, film critic for the Village Voice and contributing editor to Sight and Sound (New York, NY)
* Kent Jones, contributing editor to Film Comment, American correspondent for Cahiers du Cinema, and programmer at the Film Society of Lincoln Center in New York (New York, NY)
* Gilbert Adair, novelist, essayist, screenwriter, and occasional film critic (London, England)
* Jonathan Rosenbaum, author, movie historian, and film critic for the Chicago Reader (Chicago, IL)
* Jonathan Romney, author, essayist, and film critic for the Independent on Sunday (London, England)
* Peter Wollen, instructor of film at UCLA, filmmaker, film critic, and essayist (Los Angeles, CA)
* Tony Rayns, consultant and curator to a number of international film festivals as well as essayist and one of the world's leading experts on Eastern cinema (London, England)
* Paul Wells, Professor of Media and Cultural Studies at the University of Teeside in the UK, author, and critic (York, England)

Enormously varied and accessible, Film: The Critics' Choice is a unique and essential era-by-era survey of 100 years of movie history.

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About the Author:

Geoff Andrew has been a leading British film critic for over 15 years. He lives in London, England. Bernardo Bertolucci is a renowned master of Italian film. He resides in Rome, Italy.

From Library Journal:

Ten U.S. and U.K. film critics (both academic and media-based) have each selected their 15 favorite films within their area of expertise (e.g., European New Wave) for this highly opinionated overview of world cinema. While the contributors are all experts in their areas, this isn't a collection by the big "popular" film critics such as Roger Ebert. Yet a Western bias is still obvious throughout, with three chapters devoted to the United States, three to Europe, and one to the U.K. but only one to the rest of the world. Each critic was required to stay within his or her own territory, choose no more than one film per director, and avoid overlap, i.e., no film could appear in more than one chapter. Each of the 150 selections is given two pages, with most of one page covered by a production still. The critic includes a single-page summary and brief critique of the film. Surprisingly, for such a broad sweep of cinema history, numerous major directors are absent: Luchino Visconti, Ingmar Bergman, John Huston, John Ford, and Louis Malle, to name a few. However, such obscurities as Billy the Kid and the Green Baize Vampire are included, and perhaps they're worth a second look. Unfortunately, picture cropping isn't ideal, with many photos running two inches across the center onto the left-hand page, which is rather unattractive for a coffee-table book. Altogether, though, this intriguing, controversial collection is recommended for all academic and public library film collections, along with Robert Sklar's A World History of Film (LJ 2/1/02). Anthony J. Adam, Prairie View A&M Univ., TX
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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