SCREEN-L Archives

June 1994


Options: Use Monospaced Font
Show Text Part by Default
Show All Mail Headers

Message: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]
Topic: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]
Author: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]

Print Reply
Robert Withers <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 2 Jun 1994 20:43:22 EDT
text/plain (30 lines)
On Wed, 1 Jun 1994 22:23:40 -0500 Patrick B Bjork said:
>On Thu, 2 Jun 1994, Leslie J wrote:
>> Can someone please suggest a book that would aid the non-academic but
>> enthusiastic film-goer in gaining a more in-depth approach to watching
>> films? Something like I.A. Richards "Practical Criticism" for movies would
>> be good; it shouldn't be heavily theoretical and be fairly inexpensive.
>>  =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
>You might try an introductory text such as _Film Theory and Criticism_,
>3rd Ed., Gerald Mast & Marshall Cohen, Eds. NY: Oxford UP, 1985.
      If that's not "heavily theoretical" I don't know what is.  And not
inexpensive at over $20.  I mourn the demise of books such as Arthur Knight's
"The Liveliest Art" in the Mentor Book edition that was up to $2.50 by 1979.
Even if the stories in it were fifty percent apocryphal.  And of the
anthologies by Lewis Jacobs and others that combined readable texts by
critics and filmmakers.  All the "introductory" texts now are so relentlessly
comprehensive, theoretical and academic (despite the benefits of such
approaches) that I think they're not really accessible to the general reader
who wants to read and learn something for pleasure.
      A lively exception, though somewhat limited in scope, is Mark Crispin
Miller's anthology, "Seeing Through Movies."  And of the "Introductions" I
think Louis Giannetti's "Understanding Movies" is one of the most readable
and entertaining, with lots of provocative stills, though it's got a textbook
price and isn't so cheap.
      But of course the Mast anthology is endlessly diverting, for those who
want to work at it.