Video Hounds Golden Movie Retriever

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9781578591206: Video Hounds Golden Movie Retriever

USA Today gave it a 4-star rating, the Houston Chronicle called it "by far the best" and the New York Times says the "Hound takes the lead in a blaze of supplemental lists." The new 1996 edition of America's favorite guide to movies on video offers over 22,000 video reviews, including 1,000 new reviews.

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Review:

As short a time ago as 1994, Leonard Maltin's movie guide could boast of "more than 19,000 entries, with 300 new titles!" But with 500-plus movies jostling into theaters every year, the pocket-size, curl-up-with-it film guide has become a relic. Nowadays, film books are faintly scholarly word-hoards with three OED-style columns, a trade-size format, and a heft that calls for your sitting pants. Videohound's 1,700-page edition sasses the new millennium ("Covering 1,000 years of Movie Making Magic!" the cover says), but its girth heralds the day when all such guides will be swallowed up by some vast digital database. Until then, there's this bright book, with its uncalculated number (a hasty guess would be 26,000) of reviews of movies on video, Laserdisc, DVD, and TV, and its massive cross-listings by star, director, writer, and cinematographer (cinematographer!). Retailing itself as an irreverent tour for movie lovers, the book has surprising range, with an equal appetite for difficult, small, and foreign films and Hollywood fare. Some inconsistencies? Yep, and that's what makes guides like this fun. Kurosawa's Seven Samurai is hailed as a "masterpiece" and rewarded an admiring four bones (out of four), while the superbly Heideggerian Wings of Desire, also a "masterpiece," is equivocated to three and a half. The woof-worthy The Wedding Singer gets the same two and a half bones that they give Wes Anderson's estimably giggly debut, Bottle Rocket. Terry Zwigoff's lovely Crumb is M.I.A., and there's a tendency to eschew analysis for plot summary, but Videohound has encyclopedic breadth and does the undeclared job it sets out to accomplish: entertain, inform, and give readers a giant list of movies to watch next year. --Lyall Bush

Review:

VideoHound's Golden Movie Retriever 1998 is the most comprehensive single-volume film guide you can buy. It contains capsule reviews of more than 22,000 movies, written with wit and good humor; the films are rated in a range from "four bones" to "WOOF!" Each entry notes the year the film was released; its running time; its availability on videocassette, laserdisc, and DVD; its chief credits; and whether the film was made in black and white or color. Unlike many rival guides, the Retriever includes made-for-television movies, straight-to-video releases, miniseries, and television shows that are currently available on video. But that's not all: the second half of the volume is an enormous book of lists, making it a valuable film encyclopedia as well. The award index covers not only the Oscars, the BAFTA Awards, and the Cannes Film Festival winners, but also the Golden Globe, the Canadian Genie, the Independent Spirit, and the MTV Movie Awards. VideoHound's Golden Movie Retriever 1998 categorizes films by their country of origin and by director, star, writer, cinematographer, and composer. If you want to find information on the World Wide Web, check out the directory of the best film Web sites. Best of all is the category index, which catalogues movies according to conventional genres ("Comedy," "Film Noir," "Romance") and also under topics as wild and diverse as "Murderous Children," "Flatulence," "Satire and Parody," "Cyberpunk," "Marriage," "L.A." and "Nuns with Guns." VideoHound's Golden Movie Retriever 1998is a lively and entertaining guide that will point you toward new experiences in film and strengthen your cinematic expertise.

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