Death 24x a Second: Stillness and the Moving Image


Laura Mulvey - 2006
    Addressing some of the key questions of film theory, spectatorship, and narrative, Laura Mulvey here argues that such technologies, including home DVD players, have fundamentally altered our relationship to the movies. According to Mulvey, new media technologies give viewers the ability to control both image and story, so that movies meant to be seen collectively and followed in a linear fashion may be manipulated to contain unexpected and even unintended pleasures. The individual frame, the projected film’s best-kept secret, can now be revealed by anyone who hits pause. Easy access to repetition, slow motion, and the freeze-frame, Mulvey argues, may shift the spectator’s pleasure to a fetishistic rather than a voyeuristic investment in film. By exploring how technology can give new life to old cinema, Death 24x a Second offers an original reevaluation of film’s history and its historical usefulness.

Norma Shearer


Gavin Lambert - 1990
    Illustrated.

It's All about the Dress: What I Learned in Forty Years about Men, Women, Sex, and Fashion


Vicky Tiel - 2011
    Vicky Tiel started as an “it” girl of the 1960s and has had a four decade career designing clothes that make real women look fabulous.  Her sexy, fresh hot pants and miniskirts were used by Woody Allen in his first movie, What’s New, Pussycat?, her classic design inspired the red dress that transformed Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman, and her creations are worn today by stars such as Halle Berry and Kim Kardashian.  Tiel’s own life has been dance-the-night-away fun, from her earliest days flunking out of Parsons to design on her own, to starting a chic boutique with best friend Mia Fonssagrives in Paris, from marrying MGM’s top make-up man to becoming Elizabeth Taylor’s dear friend and part of her longtime entourage.  Tiel forged her own path, and picked up some distinctive and hard-earned lessons from the rich, famous and celebrated along the way. In IT’S ALL ABOUT THE DRESS, you’ll get a glimpse of what it’s like to be Hollywood royalty (think yachts, tiny dogs, giant pearls and peanut butter sandwiches washed down with Chateau Margaux), discover the seduction secrets of the greats (from Kim Novak to Goldie Hawn to Warren Beatty), take in a little husband-hunting advice, and even learn legendary model Dorian Leigh’s recipe for gigot d’agneau sept heures. Vicky Tiel will teach you to dress like a sex symbol , cook like the owner of a French country inn, and seize what you want from the world like an American ingénue.

Without Lying Down: Screenwriter Frances Marion and the Powerful Women of Early Hollywood


Cari Beauchamp - 1997
    She was the first woman to twice win an Academy Award for screenwriting. From 1916 to 1946 she wrote over two hundred scripts covering every conceivable genre for stars such as Mary Pickford, Gary Cooper, Greta Garbo, Marion Davies, Rudolph Valentino, Clark Gable, Marion Davies, Rudolph Valentino, Clark Gable, and Marie Dressler. Irving Thalberg "adored her and trusted her completely, " William Randolph Hearst named her for the head of west coast production for his Cosmopolitan studios, and in 1928, Sam Goldwyn raised her salary to an unparalleled $3,000 a week. Her stories were directed by George Cukor, John Ford, Alan Dwan, and King Vidor, and she went on to direct and produce a dozen films on her own. On top of all this, she painted, sculpted, spoke several languages fluently, and played "concert caliber" piano. Though she married four times, had two sons, and a dozen lovers, Frances's life story is mostly the story of her female friendships. As talented, successful, and prolific as Frances Marion was, these relationships were as legendary as her scripts. Without Lying Down is an eminently readable and meticulously documented portrait of a previously hidden era that was arguably one of the most creative and supportive for women in American history.

The Female Gaze: Essential Movies Made by Women


Alicia Malone - 2018
    The viewer is forced to see female characters through a male lens, which distorts how all of us see women, and even how women see themselves.Typically, the keepers of film history and writers of film criticism have also been men. Yet, since the very birth of cinema, women have been making movies. So, what does the world look like through the “female gaze”? This is the question bestselling author and film reporter Alicia Malone poses, as she presents The Female Gaze―a collection of essays on fifty-two movies made by women. These films encompass various eras, nationalities, and stories, yet each movie is distinctly feminine. Joining Alicia Malone is a variety of established and aspiring female film critics, who write about their favorite film made by a female director.In these fascinating chapters you’ll discover brilliantly talented and accomplished women filmmakers―both world-renowned and obscure―who have shaped the film industry in ways rarely acknowledged. Learn about the hidden figures of filmmaking and about the acclaimed luminaries of the past and present.Readers will discover:• The accomplishments of numerous women in film such as Dorothy Arzner, Ida Lupino, Kathryn Bigelow, Lady Bird’s Greta Gerwig and more• The complex lives of these women and the struggles they faced carving a place for themselves in the film industry• How these women’s unique voices shaped the films they made and influenced the film world

The Immortal Count: The Life and Films of Bela Lugosi


Arthur Lennig - 1974
    While the role may have given him eternal life on the silver screen, it doomed him to a career plagued by typecasting. After a decade of trying vainly to broaden his range and secure parts to challenge his acting abilities, Lugosi finally resigned himself to a career as the world's most recognizable vampire. His last years were spent as a forgotten and rather tragic figure.

Hitchcock's Notebooks:: An Authorized And Illustrated Look Inside The Creative Mind Of Alfred Hitchcook


Dan Auiler - 1999
    Now you can share in the Master of Suspense's inspiration and development -- his entire creative process -- in Hitchcock's Notebooks.With the complete cooperation of the Hitchcock estate and access to the director's notebooks, journals, and archives, Dan Auiler takes you from the very beginnings of story creation to the master's final touches during post-production and publicity. Actual production notes from Hitchcock's masterpieces join detailed interviews with key production personnel, including writers, actors and actresses, and Hitchcock's personal assistant of more than thirty years.Mirroring the director's working methods to give you the actual feel of his process, and highlighted by nearly nearly one hundred photographs and illustrations, this is the definitive guide into the mind of a cinematic legend.

Jane Fonda: The Private Life of a Public Woman


Patricia Bosworth - 2006
    At the top of her game she risked all, rising against the Vietnam War and shocking the world with a trip to Hanoi. Later, while becoming one of Hollywood’s most committed feminists, she financed her husband Tom Hayden’s political career in the ’80s with exercise videos that began a fitness craze and brought in millions of dollars. Just as interesting is Fonda’s next turn, as a Stepford Wife of the Gulfstream set, marrying Ted Turner and seemingly walking away from her ideals and her career.Fonda’s is a story of the blend of deep insecurity, magnetism, bravery, and determination that fuels the most inspiring and occasionally infuriating public lives. Finally here is Fonda and all the women she’s been.

Best Movies of the 70s (Taschen 25)


Jürgen Müller - 2004
    As war raged on in Vietnam and the cold war continued to escalate, Hollywood began to heat up, recovering from its commercial crisis with box-office successes such as Star Wars, Jaws, The Exorcist, and The Godfather. Thanks to directors like Spielberg and Lucas, American cinema gave birth to a new phenomenon: the blockbuster. Meanwhile, across the Atlantic, while the Nouvelle Vague died out in France, its influence extended to Germany, where the New German Cinema of Fassbinder, Wenders, and Herzog had its heyday. The sexual revolution made its way to the silver screen (cautiously in the US, more freely in Europe) most notably in Bertolucci's steamy, scandalous Last Tango in Paris. Amidst all this came a wave of nostalgic films (The Sting, American Graffiti) and Vietnam pictures (Apocalypse Now, The Deer Hunter), the rise of the anti-hero (Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Dustin Hoffman), and the prestigious short-lived genre, blaxploitation.

Screen Plays: How 25 Scripts Made It to a Theater Near You—for Better or Worse


David S. Cohen - 2008
    In interviews with Hollywood screenwriters from across the board—Oscar winners and novices alike—Cohen explores what sets apart the blockbuster successes from the downright disasters.Tracing the fortunes of twenty-five films, including Troy, Erin Brockovich, Lost in Translation, and The Aviator, Cohen offers insider access to back lots and boardrooms, to studio heads, directors, and to the over-caffeinated screenwriters themselves. As the story of each film evolves from the drawing board to the big screen, Cohen proves that how a script is written, sold, developed, and filmed can be just as dramatic and intriguing as the movie itself—especially when the resulting movie is a fiasco.Covering films of all kinds—from tongue-in-cheek romps like John Waters's A Dirty Shame to Oscar winners like Monster's Ball and The Hours—Screen Plays is an anecdote-filled, often inspiring, always revealing look at the alchemy of the movie business. With Cohen as your expert guide, Screen Plays exposes how and why certain films (such as Gladiator) become "tent poles," those runaway successes every studio needs to survive, and others become train wrecks. Full of critical clues on how to sell a script—and avoid seeing it destroyed before the director calls Action!—it's the one book every aspiring screenwriter will find irresistible.

Toms, Coons, Mulattoes, Mammies, and Bucks: An Interpretive History of Blacks in American Films


Donald Bogle - 1973
    From The Birth of a Nation--the groundbreaking work of independent filmmaker Oscar Micheaux--and Gone with the Wind to the latest work by Spike Lee, John Singleton, Denzel Washington, Halle Berry and Will Smith, Donald Bogle reveals the ways in which the depiction of blacks in American movies has changed--and the shocking ways in which it has remained the same.

Horror Films of the 1980s


John Kenneth Muir - 2007
    This time, Muir surveys 300 films from the 1980s. From backwards psychos (Just Before Dawn) and yuppie-baiting giant rats (Of Unknown Origin), to horror franchises like Friday the 13th and Hellraiser, as well as nearly forgotten obscurities such as The Children and The Boogens, Muir is our informative guide through 10 macabre years of silver screen terrors. Muir introduces the scope of the decade's horrors, and offers a history drawing parallels between current events and the nightmares unfolding on cinema screens. Each of the 300 films is discussed with detailed credits, a brief synopsis, a critical commentary, and where applicable, notes on the film's legacy beyond the 80s. Also included is the author's ranking of the 15 best horror films of the 80s.

Cary Grant: A Touch of Elegance


Warren G. Harris - 1988
    Cary Grant...Hollywood's ultimate ladies' man...the silver screen's most ardent lover. But beyond his portrayal of the sophisticated romantic hero in movies like "The Philadelphia Story" and "Notorious" was a man haunted by fear and self-doubt which affected his career as well as his personal life.

The Big Lebowski


J.M. Tyree - 2007
    Its fans tend to be fanatical, congregating at 'Lebowski Conventions' in bowling alleys across American and Britain, and even dressing up as characters from the film. Among the funniest films of the last twenty-five years, and one of the high-water marks of 1990s genre recycling and pastiche, The Big Lebowski is also littered with playful and subversive references to film history, especially to Raymond Chandler's world of hardboiled detective classics and the world of film noir. The Big Lebowski is the rarest kind of film, a comedy whose jokes become funnier with repetition. The same goes for its multitudinous jukebox-like references to other films, many of which open up vistas for intertextual interpretation. Underneath the film's breakneck pacing and foul-mouthed characters, a farcical collection of flakes, losers, and phonies, is a surprisingly humane account of what fools we mortals be. It is one of the oddest buddy films ever made, with extraordinary performances by Jeff Bridges and John Goodman. In this study, The Big Lebowski is set into the context of 1990s Hollywood cinema, anatomised for its witty relationship with the classics which it satirises, and discussed in terms of its key theme: the hopeless flailing of ridiculously unmanly men in the world of discombobulated, mixed-up, or put-on identities that is Los Angeles.

The Big Picture: The Fight for the Future of Movies


Ben Fritz - 2018
    In the past decade, Hollywood has endured a cataclysm on a par with the end of silent film and the demise of the studio system. Stars and directors have seen their power dwindle, while writers and producers lift their best techniques from TV, comic books, and the toy biz. The future of Hollywood is being written by powerful corporate brands like Marvel, Amazon, Netflix, and Lego, as well as censors in China.Ben Fritz chronicles this dramatic shakeup with unmatched skill, bringing equal fluency to both the financial and entertainment aspects of Hollywood. He dives deeply into the fruits of the Sony hack to show how the previous model, long a creative and commercial success, lost its way. And he looks ahead through interviews with dozens of key players at Disney, Marvel, Netflix, Amazon, Imax, and others to discover how they have reinvented the business. He shows us, for instance, how Marvel replaced stars with “universes,” and how Disney remade itself in Apple’s image and reaped enormous profits.But despite the destruction of the studios’ traditional playbook, Fritz argues that these seismic shifts signal the dawn of a new heyday for film. The Big Picture shows the first glimmers of this new golden age through the eyes of the creative mavericks who are defining what our movies will look like in the new era.