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Understanding Movies: The Art and History of…

Understanding Movies: The Art and History of Film (The Modern Scholar) (2008)

by Raphael Shargel

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This was another Modern Scholar audiobook by Recorded Books, and I enjoyed this one much more than their "Masters of Enterprise" which I read last month. Shargel takes a fairly broad topic and maintains an engaging discussion of both the theoretical and specific aspects of films, their making, and the people who made them.

In general, Shargel progresses from the beginning of films (the VERY beginning) to the silent era, to modern films and blockbusters with stops along the way to discuss sub-genres like Film Noir, French Realism, etc. More than a few of the movies he includes in these discussions were completely unknown to me, but he does such a good job explaining their relevance to his topic, that I did not feel lost or left behind. Due to the nature of the product (14 lectures, each 35 minutes in length), the topics go by in a brisk pace, but at no point do I feel he is not giving sufficient attention to his subject (the problem I had with "Masters of Enterprise"). A recommended read. ( )
  pbadeer | May 24, 2012 |
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This course covers the history and aesthetics of the movies. It traces the experiments and innovations that gave rise to the modern cinema, developing a vocabulary that helps explain the variety of choices filmmakers make when they construct shots and edit them together.… (more)

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