Start reading The Way Hollywood Tells It: Story and Style in Modern Movies on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here or start reading now with a free Kindle Reading App.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Add Audible Narration
 
 
 

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Colour:
Image not available
 

The Way Hollywood Tells It: Story and Style in Modern Movies [Kindle Edition]

David Bordwell
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £21.95
Kindle Price: £20.85 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
You Save: £1.10 (5%)
* Unlike print books, digital books are subject to VAT.

Free Kindle Reading App Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.

To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.

Audible Narration

Switch back and forth between reading the Kindle book and listening to the Audible narration. Add narration for a reduced price of £6.99 after you buy the Kindle book.

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition £20.85  
Hardcover --  
Paperback £21.95  
Audio Download, Unabridged £0.00 Free with Audible trial
Kindle Daily Deal
Kindle Daily Deal: Up to 70% off
Each day we unveil a new book deal at a specially discounted price--for that day only. Learn more about the Kindle Daily Deal or sign up for the Kindle Daily Deal Newsletter to receive free e-mail notifications about each day's deal.

Book Description

Hollywood moviemaking is one of the constants of American life, but how much has it changed since the glory days of the big studios? David Bordwell argues that the principles of visual storytelling created in the studio era are alive and well, even in today’s bloated blockbusters. American filmmakers have created a durable tradition—one that we should not be ashamed to call artistic, and one that survives in both mainstream entertainment and niche-marketed indie cinema. Bordwell traces the continuity of this tradition in a wide array of films made since 1960, from romantic comedies like Jerry Maguire and Love Actually to more imposing efforts like A Beautiful Mind. He also draws upon testimony from writers, directors, and editors who are acutely conscious of employing proven principles of plot and visual style. Within the limits of the "classical" approach, innovation can flourish. Bordwell examines how imaginative filmmakers have pushed the premises of the system in films such as JFK, Memento, and Magnolia. He discusses generational, technological, and economic factors leading to stability and change in Hollywood cinema and includes close analyses of selected shots and sequences. As it ranges across four decades, examining classics like American Graffiti and The Godfather as well as recent success like The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, this book provides a vivid and engaging interpretation of how Hollywood moviemakers have created a vigorous, resourceful tradition of cinematic storytelling that continues to engage audiences around the world.

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

Page of Start over
This shopping feature will continue to load items. In order to navigate out of this carousel please use your heading shortcut key to navigate to the next or previous heading.

Product Description

Review

"David Bordwell is our best writer on the cinema. He is deeply informed about films, he loves them, and he writes about them with a clarity and perception that makes the prose itself a joy to read. Because he sees movies so freshly and deeply he isn't deceived by the usual categories and finds excellence and experiment in unexpected places." - Roger Ebert "There is no shortage of scholarly literature on contemporary Hollywood, but none of it lives up to the standards set by Bordwell here. No one else has this range, depth, sophistication or authority. More remarkable still, Bordwell pulls this off with remarkable lightness of touch." - Murray Smith, University of Kent"

About the Author

David Bordwell is Jacques Ledoux Professor of Film Studies and Hilldale Professor of Humanities at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Among his books are Figures Traced in Light: On Cinematic Staging (California, 2004), Film History: An Introduction (with Kristin Thompson, 2002), Planet Hong Kong: Popular Cinema and the Art of Entertainment (2000), and On the History of Film Style (1997).

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 4455 KB
  • Print Length: 309 pages
  • Publisher: University of California Press; 1 edition (10 April 2006)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007I1VXWS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • : Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #668,484 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?


More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Customer Reviews

4 star
0
3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
0
5.0 out of 5 stars
5.0 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
I highly recommend this book for both students of film theory and for working filmmakers. It is fair, balance, well written and extremely well researched. The book is split into two sections - one covering story in post 1960 film and the other analysing directorial style during the same period.

The previous reviewer presented a very selective view on Bordwell essays. By commenting "This is a superb insight into the modern lapse into lazy film making" the reviewer completely neglects Bordwell's thoughts on story and screen-writing.

Certainly, in the second half of the book Bordwell neatly illustrates the lack of focus in modern direction, taking 'Two Week's Notice' and 'Lord Of The Rings' as examples of muddled directions. But this is an oversimplification as he also illustrates the changing tastes of modern directors. For example, he presents a comparison of the same scene in the 1968 and 1999 versions of 'The Thomas Crown Affair' highlighting the different approaches.

However, in the first section Bordwell provides a much more positive view on modern scriptwriting. His detailed analysis of `Jerry Maguire' is a fabulous case in point. Through telling the story of Cameron Crowe's journey to emulate his hero Billy Wilder and by breaking down the script's core components Bordwell shows us the complexity in some modern Hollywood fare.

To simply call the book an "insight into the modern lapse into lazy film making" is to do it a disservice.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 11 Oct. 2009
Format:Paperback
This is a superb insight into the modern lapse into lazy film making. The section discussing Lord of The Rings use of reverse shots is particularly revealing.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  7 reviews
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nobody Does it Better! 24 Oct. 2006
By Tony Williams - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Like the author's other works, this is a highly meticulous and empirical study of the way contemporary Hollywood films function. Paying close attention to selected films by intensive frame analysis, Bordwell calls into question many contemporary "sibboleths" concerning the status of "post-Hollywood" which he reveals as having more connections with its classical counterpart than most critics believe. His attention to fine detail and references to "American Cinematographer" and screenwriting manuals reveal that he has really done his homework. He challenges his contemporaries to do likewise before they engage in problematic "post" judgements whether they be on the realm of postmodernism, post-colonialism, and post- anything which may become academic equivalents of those formerly fashionable platform shoes or flared trousers that often date episodes of the 1970s British cop series THE SWEENEY.

The references to contemporary Hong Kong cinema and analysis of films such as Johnny To's A HERO NEVER DIES are also valuable components of this book. Like DRAGNET's Sergeant Joe Friday, Bordwell insists that we supply facts based on viewing the evidence ourselves. We should not ignore important empirical aspects before we begin to make meanings that may eventually prove to be non-substantial. Those who choose to avoid the well-researched findings of this book should be issued with speeding tickets and forced to attend a scholarly version of "community service" or "boot camp" involving the detailed viewings of as many films as possible, reading interviews with film directors, and studying important journals such as AMERICAN CINEMATOGRAPHER. This is equally important for those newly converted "film experts" in English Departments of postmodernist persuasion who recently discover Laura Mulvey's 1975 essay on "Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema" and regard it as a "gospel" truth which remains unaltered today! These feelings are more akin to non-linguistic theological studies and not the highly textual, linguistic based explorations of biblical and near eastern studies that relay on studies in pre-semitic studies, Canaanite, Aramaic, and Arabic studies to reveal key empirical structures influencing "holy writ."

This is another indispensable work by an important scholar that every serious professor and student should learn from even if it only involves better interpretation and a more professional "making of meaning."
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent study of post-classical Hollywood filmmaking 11 Dec. 2009
By S. Follows - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Excellent study of post-classical Hollywood filmmaking, 11 Dec 2009

I highly recommend this book for both students of film theory and for working filmmakers. It is fair, balance, well written and extremely well researched. The book is split into two sections - one covering story in post 1960 film and the other analysing directorial style during the same period.

In the first section Bordwell provides a positive view on modern scriptwriting. His detailed analysis of `Jerry Maguire' is a fabulous case in point. Through telling the story of Cameron Crowe's journey to emulate his hero Billy Wilder and by breaking down the script's core components Bordwell shows us the complexity in some modern Hollywood fare.

In the second half of the book Bordwell neatly illustrates the lack of focus in modern direction, taking 'Two Week's Notice' and 'Lord Of The Rings' as examples of muddled directions. But this is an oversimplification as he also illustrates the changing tastes of modern directors. For example, he presents a comparison of the same scene in the 1968 and 1999 versions of 'The Thomas Crown Affair' highlighting the different approaches.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Movies 101 29 Nov. 2010
By olingerstories - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
David Bordwell's THE WAY HOLLYWOOD TELLS IT deconstructs classical and modern movies by pentrating analysis of both story, editing, and filming. His explanation of Cameron Crowe's Jerry Maguire and Crowe's plotting is as good as any review you're read from Kael or Hunter. Bordwell explores how longer takes have been replaced in the modern scene by shorter, quicker edits in the name of not avoiding audience boredom. The number of movies listed is prodigious. The research involved is staggering. A first-rate book for any movie lover.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, great textbook 5 Nov. 2006
By Nikica Gilic - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
David Bordwell is one of the most widely read film scholars around, and not without reason: he writes with ease and ellegance, his insights are often deep and almost always relevant, his starting points are usually essential for better understanding cinematic art. Is he always right?
Of course not, he is not a religious profet or Jacques Lacan (Oops!).

However he usually describes the area of his study quite well, cites references and data he would like you to check in order to see whether he is right and, well, does serious scholarly work. Not a small achievent in a fastly globalizing (and fastly "mcdonaldsizing") academic community of cultural gurus who know everything about everything... Therefore, when you disagree with him (as I sometimes do), you usually know what your are disagreeing about and why.

This book is another Bordwell's insightful contribution to the study of American and global cinema (styles in cinema are basically more international/global than in literature; probably less than in classical music or jazz), explaining how contemporary cinema develops from older stylistical patterns. From the era of silent movies or Slavko Vorkapic's experiments for Frank Capra to modern-era (greatly digitalized) blockbusters, Hollywood's manners and procedures of telling a story can be compared with quite a fruitfull result.
Ofcourse, simple description of stylistic trend or procedure does not directly serve as a proof of aesthetic value, but the subject of this book is, basically, style, not aesthetic value or anything else that can be connected to (and is intertwined on many levels with) style.
This book is equally useful for scholars, teachers and (thanks to his nice style and clear argumentation) students of cinema and all other educated art lovers.
5.0 out of 5 stars Very useful for a movie critic or for any film lover 5 Nov. 2014
By Molto Canape - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Very useful for a movie critic or for any film lover. Bordwell deserves his reputation as one of the great and most influential film academics of our time.
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions
   


Look for similar items by category