Film

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More than 16,000 capsule movie reviews, with more than 300 new entries

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More than 13,000 DVD and 13,000 video listings

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Up-to-date list of mail-order and online sources for buying and renting DVDs and videos

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Completely updated index of leading performers

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Official motion picture code ratings from G to NC-17

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Old and new theatrical and video releases rated **** to BOMB MORE Exact running times—an invaluable guide for recording and for discovering which movies have been edited

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Reviews of little-known sleepers, foreign films, rarities, and classics

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Leonard's personal list of fifty notable debut features

Summer blockbusters and independent sleepers; masterworks of Alfred Hitchcock, Billy Wilder, and Martin Scorsese; the timeless comedy of the Marx Brothers and Buster Keaton; animated classics from Walt Disney and Pixar; the finest foreign films ever made. This 2013 edition covers the modern era, from 1965 to the present, while including all the great older films you can’t afford to miss—and those you can—from box-office smashes to cult classics to forgotten gems to forgettable bombs, listed alphabetically, and complete with all the essential information you could ask for.

• Date of release, running time, director, stars, MPAA ratings, color or black and white
• Concise summary, capsule review, and four-star-to-BOMB rating system
• Precise information on films shot in widescreen format
• Symbols for DVD s, videos, and laserdiscs
• Completely updated index of leading actors
• Up-to-date list of mail-order and online sources for buying and renting DVDs and videos
For almost thirty years, David Thomson’s Biographical Dictionary of Film has been not merely “the finest reference book ever written about movies” (Graham Fuller, Interview), not merely the “desert island book” of art critic David Sylvester, not merely “a great, crazy masterpiece” (Geoff Dyer, The Guardian), but also “fiendishly seductive” (Greil Marcus, Rolling Stone).

This new edition updates the older entries and adds 30 new ones: Darren Aronofsky, Emmanuelle Beart, Jerry Bruckheimer, Larry Clark, Jennifer Connelly, Chris Cooper, Sofia Coppola, Alfonso Cuaron, Richard Curtis, Sir Richard Eyre, Sir Michael Gambon, Christopher Guest, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Spike Jonze, Wong Kar-Wai, Laura Linney, Tobey Maguire, Michael Moore, Samantha Morton, Mike Myers, Christopher Nolan, Dennis Price, Adam Sandler, Kevin Smith, Kiefer Sutherland, Charlize Theron, Larry Wachowski and Andy Wachowski, Lew Wasserman, Naomi Watts, and Ray Winstone.

In all, the book includes more than 1300 entries, some of them just a pungent paragraph, some of them several thousand words long. In addition to the new “musts,” Thomson has added key figures from film history–lively anatomies of Graham Greene, Eddie Cantor, Pauline Kael, Abbott and Costello, Noël Coward, Hoagy Carmichael, Dorothy Gish, Rin Tin Tin, and more.

Here is a great, rare book, one that encompasses the chaos of art, entertainment, money, vulgarity, and nonsense that we call the movies. Personal, opinionated, funny, daring, provocative, and passionate, it is the one book that every filmmaker and film buff must own. Time Out named it one of the ten best books of the 1990s. Gavin Lambert recognized it as “a work of imagination in its own right.” Now better than ever–a masterwork by the man playwright David Hare called “the most stimulating and thoughtful film critic now writing.”
“Fantastic.”  Gore Vidal, New York Review of Books
“Grand.”  Ray Bradbury, Los Angeles Times
“Definitive.”  Salmon Rushdie, The New Yorker
“A fluent, incisive and fair history of life in Hollywood during the golden age of films.  The author seems to have talked to everyone with knowledge of what went on at MGM in its heyday. . . . Marvelous.”       Publishers Weekly
 
From the ten scriptwriters at work to the scandal headlines of Munchkin orgies at the Culver City Hotel to the Witch's (accidental) burning, here is the real story of the making of The Wizard of Oz. This richly detailed re-creation brings alive a major Hollywood studio and reveals, through hundreds of interviews (with cameramen, screenwriters, costume designers, directors, producers, light technicians, and actors), how the factory-like Hollywood system of moviemaking miraculously produced one of the most enduring and best-loved films ever made.
 
We watch it happen--the bright, idiosyncratic, wildly devoted MGM-ers inventing the lines, the songs; flying hordes of monkeys through the sky; growing a poppy field; building the Emerald City (and 60 other sets); designing and sewing the nearly 1,000 costumes; enduring the pressures from the front office; choosing the actors.
 
Here is Oz, a marvelous, unprecedented experience of studio life as it was lived day by day, detail by detail, department by department, at the most powerful and flamboyant studio Hollywood has ever known--at its moment of greatest power.
 
Aljean Harmetz is the author of The Making of Casablanca, On the Road to Tara: The Making of Gone with the Wind, and other books.
 
 
It's a typical summer Friday night and the smell of popcorn is in the air. Throngs of fans jam into air-conditioned multiplexes to escape for two hours in the dark, blissfully lost in Hollywood's latest glittery confection complete with megawatt celebrities, awesome special effects, and enormous marketing budgets. The world is in love with the blockbuster movie, and these cinematic behemoths have risen to dominate the film industry, breaking box office records every weekend. With the passion and wit of a true movie buff and the insight of an internationally renowned critic, Tom Shone is the first to make sense of this phenomenon by taking readers through the decades that have shaped the modern blockbuster and forever transformed the face of Hollywood.
The moment the shark fin broke the water in 1975, a new monster was born. Fast, visceral, and devouring all in its path, the blockbuster had arrived. In just a few weeks Jaws earned more than $100 million in ticket sales, an unprecedented feat that heralded a new era in film. Soon, blockbuster auteurs such as Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, and James Cameron would revive the flagging fortunes of the studios and lure audiences back into theaters with the promise of thrills, plenty of action, and an escape from art house pretension.
But somewhere along the line, the beast they awakened took on a life of its own, and by the 1990s production budgets had escalated as quickly as profits. Hollywood entered a topsy-turvy world ruled by marketing and merchandising mavens, in which flops like Godzilla made money and hits had to break records just to break even. The blockbuster changed from a major event that took place a few times a year into something that audiences have come to expect weekly, piling into the backs of one another in an annual demolition derby that has left even Hollywood aghast.
Tom Shone has interviewed all the key participants -- from cinematic visionaries like Spielberg and Lucas and the executives who greenlight these spectacles down to the effects wizards who detonated the Death Star and blew up the White House -- in order to reveal the ways in which blockbusters have transformed how Hollywood makes movies and how we watch them. As entertaining as the films it chronicles, Blockbuster is a must-read for any fan who delights in the magic of the movies.
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