Category Archives: book reviews

Who Needs That Ther’ Book Lernin’?: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, July 2018 Edition, Vol. 451

  Who Needs That Ther’ Book Lernin’?:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, July 2018 Edition, Vol. 451     Despite such contemporary wizards as Mark Zuckerberg asserting the notion that modern life requires little more wisdom than can be drawn … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, Boston, children's books, History, Movies, Musicals, Mystery, short stories, women, writing | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Revisit: 35 Lb. Monkey Business: “The Man With the Golden Arm” (1955)

“The Man With the Golden Arm”  (1955) (Originally posted on July 30, 2013)     One of the characteristics of the movies of the “Golden Age” studio era of filmmaking was the anesthetizing comfort they were intended to provide the audience, … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, Frank Sinatra, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, writing | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

And a Little Child Shall Lead Them: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, May 2018 Edition, Vol. K – 6

And a Little Child Shall Lead Them: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, May 2018 Edition, Vol. K – 6      Why does it seem that the very idea of “good”children has been abandoned? The bawling spoiled moppets who pollute every … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, British films, children, French cinema, History, humor, Italian cinema, Movies, parenting, Romance, westerns, writing | 7 Comments

Camera Obscura: “I Am a Camera” (1955)

       “I Am a Camera”  (1955)    The first thing one notices in “I Am a Camera” is that the tone is completely wrong. In Christopher Isherwood’s Farewell to Berlin, the second of two novels comprising The Berlin Stories, the … Continue reading

Posted in acting, book reviews, books, Movies, Reviews, theater, women, writing | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Trapped in Midair: “The Eiger Sanction” (1975)

      “The Eiger Sanction”  (1975)      If the opening scene of “The Eiger Sanction” is any indication, one would expect to be seeing a straightforward espionage drama. However, when we are soon introduced to a black agent … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, clint eastwood, espionage, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, writing | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Go to Gift Wrap: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Dec. 2017 Edition Part Deux, Vol. 25

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Go to Gift Wrap:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Dec. 2017 Edition Part Deux, Vol. 25     In Tom Stoppard’s absurdist play, two minor figures from Shakespeare’s Hamlet are granted the center stage in a theatrical … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, Christmas, Entertainment, History, holidays, Movies, Musicals, photography, Reviews, Romance, women, writing | 4 Comments

“All Aboard!”: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Dec. 2017 Edition, Vol. 3:10

“All Aboard!”:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Dec. 2017 Edition, Vol. 3:10 With the exception of the horse, the automobile, the airplane and the whore with the heart of gold, there is, perhaps, no mode of taking a ride more … Continue reading

Posted in animation, book reviews, books, espionage, Hitchcock, movie reviews, Movies, Musicals, Reviews, Romance, westerns, women, writing | 5 Comments

Over Troubled Waters: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Nov. 2017 Edition, Vol. 7384750069858

Over Troubled Waters: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Nov. 2017 Edition, Vol. 7384750069858      As the song goes, “what goes up, must come down”. That’s right, you may have been expecting a little slice of Paul Simon, but it … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, History, movie reviews, Movies, Mystery, Reviews, Romance, silent movies, women, World War II, writing | 3 Comments

Damsels in Distress: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Oct. 2017 Edition, Vol. o – o

Damsels in Distress: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Oct, 2017 Edition, Vol. o – o      It may be politically incorrect to point out the obvious fact that holding a door open for a lady might well bring widespread … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, horror, humor, movie reviews, Movies, Mystery, politics, Reviews, silent movies, women, writing | Leave a comment

Hanging by a Thread: “Il cappotto” / “The Overcoat” (1952)

             “Il cappotto” / “The Overcoat”  (1952) In “Il Cappotto”, director Alberto Lattuada transposes Nikolai Gogol’s  short story from 1800’s Russia to a contemporary Italy, and while the film is representative of an early fledgling move in … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, comedy, fantasy, Italian cinema, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, Romance, short stories, writing | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Chandler’s Trailers: “Where Eagles Dare” (1969)

    There is not a poetic, contemplative, emotional nor genuinely human moment in ‘Where Eagles Dare”. It’s a damnably dirty dumbbell of a film, unashamedly made to excite the senses of undiscriminating viewers to whom empty, noisy and unceasing explosions, … Continue reading

Posted in Alistair MacLean, book reviews, books, clint eastwood, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, Richard Burton, war movies, World War II, writing | Tagged | Leave a comment

An Intimate Life: Undressing Emmanuelle by Sylvia Kristel

             Undressing Emmanuelle by Sylvia Kristel     The memoirs of a Euro starlet whose greatest claim to fame was in embodying the cinematic incarnation of the eponymous character in the provocative roman a clef by … Continue reading

Posted in biography, book reviews, books, erotica, French cinema, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, women, writing | Tagged | Leave a comment

Up in the Air: “Battle of Britain: The Making of a Film” by Leonard Mosley

Battle of Britain: The Making of a Film by Leonard Mosley     Even the most ardent auteurist, once their proclivity toward overzealous artistic deification is tranquilized, will eventually admit that film making is a collective creative process, though most “insider” … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, History, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, war movies, World War II, writing | Leave a comment

A View From the Dark: Movie Freak by Owen Gleiberman

A View From the Dark: Movie Freak by Owen Gleiberman The appetite publishers seem to have for printing the memoirs of even the most irrelevant movie personalities appears insatiable; so much so that in recent years this pseudo-gossipy, trivially anecdotal framework … Continue reading

Posted in biography, book reviews, books, Culture, Drive-In Movies, Entertainment, movie reviews, Reviews, writing | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Summer Beach Books: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, June 2017 Edition, Vol. 925

Summer Beach Books:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, June 2017 Edition, Vol. 925 At the dawn of the upcoming summer vacation season, it can never be too early to begin the selection process in making seasonal selections of those printed … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, Boston, comic books, History, horror, movie reviews, Movies, Mystery, Reviews, Romance, theater, women, writing | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Time is a Cruel Mistress: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Jan. 2017 Edition, Vol. 1812

Time is a Cruel Mistress: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Jan. 2017 Edition, Vol. 1812     One of the odd paradoxes occurring with each New Year’s holiday is the assertion that it is a year later, when in fact … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, Boston, Film, humor, movie reviews, Movies, Puzzles, Reviews, Romance, women | 1 Comment

It’s My Party: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, July 2016 Edition, Vol. 54

It’s My Party: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, July 2016 Edition, Vol. 54       In these days of American celebration, let us not forget those attributes of the human spirit which have helped cement our nation as the place … Continue reading

Posted in blogs, book reviews, books, Film, Marilyn Monroe, Marlon Brando, Movies, photography, Puzzles, Reviews, women | 7 Comments

Writers as Artists: Classic Film Photo Quiz, April 2016 Edition, Vol. X

 Writers as Artists:  Classic Film Photo Quiz, April 2016 Edition, Vol. X      Without writers the world would be full of blank pages and a seriously diminished need for bookmarks. Even the world of cinema, with its highly overdeveloped … Continue reading

Posted in biography, book reviews, books, Film, History, Movies, photography, Romance, theater, women, writing | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Littled Big Man: “Duke: We’re Glad We Knew You” edited by Herb Fagen

Littled Big Man: Duke: We’re Glad We Knew You edited by Herb Fagen      If one attempts a brief summation of a message one is left with in Herb Fagen’s tributary book Duke: We’re Glad We Knew You, it’s that its subject- … Continue reading

Posted in acting, biography, book reviews, books, Film, History, John Wayne, Movies, politics, Reviews, westerns, writing | Tagged | 1 Comment

Pratfalls on the Page: The Screwball Comedy Films: A History and Filmography, 1934 – 1942 by Duane Byrge and Robert Milton Miller

      It takes ambition to tackle the definition of entire genre of movie storytelling (if one is looking for substance), especially within the almost impossible to analyze field of comedy (just how do you explain funny anyway?), and perhaps more … Continue reading

Posted in 1930's movies, book reviews, books, comedy, Film, History, humor, Movies, Reviews, writing | Tagged , | Leave a comment

A View From the Cheap Seats: “The Movie That Changed My Life” edited by David Rosenberg

     With the wealth (actually gluttonous overabundance) of film books published examining, probing, criticizing, reinterpreting, psychoanalyzing, and performing generally obscure, obtuse and cryptic academic microsurgery-some so labyrinthine in the expression of an aesthetic philosophy, they might as well be expressed … Continue reading

Posted in blogging, book reviews, books, Culture, Entertainment, Film, Film Reviews, History, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, women, writing | Leave a comment

Through a Pint Glass, Darkly: Hellraisers: The Life and Inebriated Times of Richard Burton, Richard Harris, Peter O’Toole, and Oliver Reed by Robert Sellers

     Hellraisers: The Life and Inebriated Times of Richard Burton, Richard Harris, Peter O’Toole, and Oliver Reed is a paean to talent squandered, lives ruined and endless acts of debauchery, violence and vandalism resulting in personal insult, broken marriages and … Continue reading

Posted in acting, book reviews, books, Film, History, Ireland, Movies, Reviews, Richard Burton, theater, writing | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Maddux Redux: “Fiction Into Film” by Neil D. Isaacs, Rachel Maddux and Stirling Silliphant

     The wealth of books crowding the shelves of today’s bookstores, in the cinema section, feature an abundance of promissory, abbreviated seminars in film making technique, conception, adaptation and success. When one considers just a few years ago there was … Continue reading

Posted in acting, book reviews, books, Film, Movies, Reviews, Romance, women, writing | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

“Silents” is Golden: “Silent Dreams”, written by Dandi Daley Mackall, illustrated by Karen A. Jerome

   There is no reason to expect less of, nor to set lower standards for, children’s literature than of those expectations and standards demanded by the discriminating adult reader.     In the realm of children’s illustrated books, there is a … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, children, children's books, illustrated books, illustration, Movies, parenting, silent films, silent movies | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Don’t Let This Happen To You!: “Hollywood Rat Race” by Ed Wood, Jr.

“The fragrance of the roses has wafted to you from all directions, mostly from a bunch of smelly characters. The thorns will become even more prevalent as the flowers wither and the perfume disintegrates into thin air. The thorns of … Continue reading

Posted in 1950's cinema, book reviews, books, Culture, drive-in cinema, Film Reviews, grindhouse, how-to?, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment