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David Lean: A Biography

4.36  ·  Rating Details  ·  69 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
The life and its biographer provide a landmark work on the cinema. Emerging from a childhood of nearly Dickensian darkness, David Lean found his great success as a director of the appropriately titled Great Expectations.

There followed his legendary black-and-white films of the 1940s and his four-film movie collaboration with Noel Coward. Lean's 1955 film Summertime took hi
Hardcover, 800 pages
Published August 15th 1996 by St. Martin's Press (first published 1996)
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I chose this book mainly because I am an admirer of Kevin Brownlow rather than of David Lean - the former is one of the key historians of early Hollywood but this is not really his era and it seems a strange commission to me. I am not a huge fan of Lean's bloated epics (Lawrence excepted) but I do like his tighter, earlier B/W films, such as Great Expectations and In Which we Serve, and the incomparable stiff-upper-lip classic Brief Encounter. Lean made his name as an ace 'cutter' [film editor] ...more
Oct 08, 2010 Alexa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"One of the essentials in the movies is for the audience to feel that they are in the hands of a good story teller; they are being led, and what leads them is the intention of the scene. If it has the intention, you ill nearly always win though. It somehow carries you on like a wave which breaks on the share and carries you up that beach. All great things have an intention behind them. We didn't have a real intention on Madeleine....I was looking at in in the wrong way. I had no particular feeli ...more
Keith B.
Jan 18, 2008 Keith B. rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: nicole contreras
One of the best biography books i've ever read. it is very deeply researched, great details of one of the most exciting directors in cinema. It's a very thick book, but what i found so surprising was how well paced it was, it flows well.
I learned about integrity, and how precise and assured one has to be in being a leader in a movie. He directed movies like Lawrence of Arabia, Dr. Zhivago, Summertime, and many more. He was known for his epic filmmaking. David Lean is not the best example in how
Dec 22, 2015 John rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Aug 19, 2007 Ben rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, cinema
Probably the best film biography I've ever read. It paints the picture of man who was both enormously generous and incredibly petty, and a man who despite having all the talent in the world was crippled by insecurity. And the final few pages are amongst the most moving I've read in any book.
May 17, 2009 Mike rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you're interested in the life and films of David Lean - this is the definitive biography
Mar 12, 2013 Alex rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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Kevin Brownlow, is a filmmaker, film historian, television documentary-maker, author, and Academy Award recipient. Brownlow is best known for his work documenting the history of the silent era. Brownlow became interested in silent film at the age of eleven. This interest grew into a career spent documenting and restoring film. He has rescued many silent films and their history. His initiative in i ...more
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