(Very) Belated thanks to all who recommended film books - Mr Stack’s being particularly comprehensive. “Adventures in a Screen Trade” and “Easy Riders, Raging Bulls” seemed to be them top picks, and they’re both fine books. I should also recommend Blockbuster by Tom Shone, it’s a great antidote to Biskind’s “Star Wars and Jaws killed real films” argument. After all, you can love the Last Detail, Chinatown and Mean Streets as well as Star Wars, Alien, and Who Framed Roger Rabbit. Even if you don’t agree with his arguement, it’s a great read.
Talking of Who Framed Roger Rabbit, there’s a nice little featurette on the What Lies Beneath DVD about Robert Zemeckis. Tom Hanks says of Zemeckis - “Bob has a great clarity. He’s great at focusing on the ‘red dot’ of what a scene is about and saying ‘how can we maximise that red dot?”
In one of the Potdoll’s film book recommendations, MacKendrick On Filmaking, Alexander MacKendrick states that “Obsurity is rarely a virtue,” and quotes Truffaut: “To those who question whether clarity is all that important, I can only say that it is the most important quality in the making of a film” Clarity. What’s your script/scene about? And is that clear to the audience?