Magazine article American Cinematographer

The Bookshelf

Magazine article American Cinematographer

The Bookshelf

Article excerpt


An in-depth study by Gerald Pratley, THE CINEMA OF DAVID LEAN (Barnes $12.50) illuminates the director's cinematic sense and his gift to visualize ideas through lyrical symbols, dramatic contrasts or sweeping landscapes. Whether dealing with intimate situations (Brief Encounter) or mass emotions (Ryan's Daughter), Lean's mastery of the medium is probed in this perceptive, well-illustrated volume.

To its "Dialogue on Film" series. The American Film Institute has added WILLIAM FRIEDKIN, the transcript of a seminar where Friedkin discussed with remarkable lucidity and candor his approach to filmmaking in general and to the director's role in cinematic creation. Specific aspects of The Exorcist and The French Connection, ranging from cinematography to acting and special effects, were explored in a stimulating give-and-take atmosphere.

A Japanese director whose films were originally refused export licenses because of their "excessive Japaneseness" is discussed in OZU, HIS LIFE AND FILMS (U. of California Press $14.50) by top expert Donald Richie. Ozu's cinematic style, working methods, philosophy and subject matter are thoughtfully documented and brilliantly interpreted as to their meaning and place in Japan's culture and art. Richie's critique of Ozu's films and his biographical filmography reveal the artistic strategies and concepts of the late director.

Willi Frischauer takes us BEHIND THE SCENES WITH OTTO PREMINGER (Morrow $7.95), an exciting but perilous journey in view of the volatile director's temperamental outbursts and autocratic manner. The book is an attractive mixture of personal observations and well-publicized facts, skillfully arranged into a composite picture that is intimate, credible and eminently readable.

Volume Two in the series, THE HOLLYWOOD PROFESSIONALS (Barnes $2.95), surveys the contribution to cinema art and history of three directors, unfailingly competent and often inspired filmmakers. Clive Denton writes about Henry King, renowned for Jesse James and The Robe; Kingsley Canham discusses Lewis Milestone, justly celebrated for The Front Page and All Quiet on the Western Front; and Tony Thomas appraises Sam Wood, remembered for Goodbye Mr. Chips and Our Town.


In THE ALICE FAYE MOVIE BOOK (Stackpole $9.95) by W. Franklyn Moshier, camera credit to such artists as Leon Shamroy, Joseph LaShelle and Peverell Marley indicates the type of photography that created the glamorous and buoyant image fans expected of their idols.

M a I achy McCoy's biography of STEVE McQUEEN (Regnery $7.95) offers a sharply observed portrait of a maverick actor whose complex personality is often reflected in his roles. McQueen's interest in filmmaking motivated the spectacular stunts of Bullitt and Le Mans.

"The untold story of Brando's private life" unquestionably lives up to its billing in BUD: THE BRANDO I KNEW (Delacorte $7.95). Author Carlo Fiore, his sidekick, confidant, procurer and general factotum until a predictable falling out, tells the unvarnished truth (or a reasonable facsimile thereof) in an eminently readable and sometimes sensational exposé.

The historic development of the gangster cycle is surveyed in THE GEORGE RAFT FILE (Drake $7. …

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