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The New Biographical Dictionary of Film

by David Thomson

ISBN 0375411283 / 9780375411281 / 0-375-41128-3
Publisher Alfred A. Knopf
Language English
Edition Hardcover
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Book summary

For twenty-five years, David Thomsons 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).

Now it returns, with its old entries updated and 300 new onesfrom Luc Besson to Reese Witherspoonmaking more than 1300 in all, 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 historylively anatomies of Graham Greene, Eddie Cantor, Pauline Kael, Abbott and Costello, NoŽl 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 evera masterwork by the man playwright David Hare called the most stimulating and thoughtful film critic now writing. [via]