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A Short History of the Movies

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  176 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
The seventh edition of A Short History of the Movies continues the tradition that has made it the most widely used textbook ever for college courses in film history. This volume offers students a panoramic overview of the worldwide development of film, from the early Mack Sennett and Charlie Chaplin shorts, through the studio heyday of the 1930s and 1940s and the 'Hollywoo ...more
Paperback, Seventh Edition, 702 pages
Published July 1st 1999 by Longman Publishing Group (first published 1971)
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This is the best single-volume history of film I have ever come across. I re-read it regularly. The sections on the birth and early years of cinema are essential reading for any film buff, and the in-depth analyses of key films are full of original insights. I have the 4th Edition, published in 1986 and written by Gerald Mast. Later editions (the 11th came out in 2011) were authored by Bruce Kawin, after Mast died of AIDS in 1988, at age 48.
Probably one of the best textbooks I've read. The fascinating subject matter helps, of couse, but Mast and Kawin offer a superb overview of the entire history of cinema, from its very beginnings to the present day. Aside from wishing that asian cinema were more thoroughly explored, I have no complaints. I recommend this book to any film enthusiasts; I'm not a film student myself, and I loved the read (it introduced me to a lot of great movies, too).
Jan 31, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: film
Required reading for me in a film appreciation class at university, this is a nice benchmark for anyone interested in studying film.
Nick Livanos
Aug 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my only book on cinema history, so I like it.
Apr 10, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So informative. Read it for a class and learned a lot!
Oct 18, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Comprehensive and understandable. I still find myself referring to this book often.
This book is okay. The author has really done his homework. The reader is directed to many interesting points.
May 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Like many History books, the authors may have emphasized some events/films more than others. But, overall, they were quite concise.
Michael Clayton
Mar 29, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A good place to start for anyone interested in film history.
Yvette Bustamante
Mar 24, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
dense with info on u.s and foreign film history. though the book can read a bit dry at times it has taught me most of what i know about the great and the good films out there :)
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Tangent Much? 1 4 Jul 28, 2011 10:50PM  
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