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The New York Times Guide to the Best 1,000 Movies Ever Made (Film Critics of the New York Times) Paperback – 21 Feb 2004


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Product details

  • Paperback: 1200 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; Rev Upd Su edition (21 Feb. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312326114
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312326111
  • Product Dimensions: 17.6 x 5.2 x 21.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 417,819 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
.. well here looks a good one.
I've not had chance to fully digest it yet, but it looks fine.
Be aware the reviews are (almost all) from time of release. This adds a certain period charm and interest.. but also means it lacks the long view as to how a film 'settled down' through the years.
For the collectors, the list tickers? As a new challange.. it looks good. I have done 1001 MYMSBYD and also 96%+ through Halliwell's, and about 90% of 'The Guardians 1000 films you must see... and yet, on a rough check, I'm left with an interesting challenge of about 300 in this book that are not in the others.
I haven't dived into it enough to discover how many of the ones in this book are real stinkers to find.. but I doubt it is as tough. Neither, at preliminary browse, it does seem to have as many weird and wonderful experimentals and highly obscure world cinema. Take that comment as either a criticism or compliment depending on your views.and tastes.
For me.. well, I'm glad I did 1001 MYMSBYD, mainly for the reasons stated above, but I'm delighted to have this book as a companion.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Mr. T. Molnard on 18 May 2011
Format: Paperback
This book contains the critics of 1000 films, as they were published in the New York Times when the movie was out. With an additional list of films per countries. It takes you back at the time when the movie was made and thus greatly enhances your understanding of it. I never watch a movie without reading two or three critics (Virgin Movie guide, this book, etc). A great idea, buying this book.
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By David Belilios on 5 Dec. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This item is a present so I am unable to write a review of the product contents.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 21 reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Guides such as this are still of great value 20 Mar. 2013
By T. Murphy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The previous reviewers were correct when they said that reviews of the movies listed in this book are available online, but what are actually available are review summaries, not the original, complete reviews. There are plenty of original reviews from other publications available online, I realize, but not from the New York Times, unless you subscribe to their online service.

But, still, why buy the "tome" if you are satisfied with the reviews from other sources? Got me there. But if you're like me and you have a high regard for the Times' reviewers, past and present, and also value their selections, categorizations, and even the original best ten lists by year, this compilation is worth it. Okay, I admit I'm an old guy, but I do use the internet all the time, and one thing I don't like about it is the necessity of sifting through a ton of hits only to be disappointed that I didn't quite find what I really wanted. Yeah, I could piece it all together, but, in my opinion, there is still value in picking a volume off the shelf and getting just what you wanted in the first place.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
... of the reviewers in this book couldn't understand how great movies like JAWS 31 July 2014
By Charlie'sAngel - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Many of the reviewers in this book couldn't understand how great movies like JAWS, Godfather, Breakfast Club, and many other great great films were. Get the books by Roger Ebert instead. He always got it right, and always wrote for the movie-goer as well as the film lover.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Not useful, not practical, out of date, no thanks. 5 Jan. 2015
By A. Delbosc - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this for my husband with the hope that he could browse through it and bookmark films to rent. I wish I had been able to flick through it on the shelf before ordering, because it's not a very useful guide at all.

First issue is that the most recent films are from 2002. Wish I'd paid more attention to that - that leaves out over a decade of good films. So the majority of films are old, great if you're into that but not really what we wanted.

Second problem, because the reviews were written in the past, they reference actors, people, current events and comparisons that are so dated it's often difficult to understand the review. My husband said he'd sometimes read a review of a movie he had actually seen but still didn't understand what the review was referring to until halfway through. So you really don't get a good perspective on the film. Next time I'll look for a book where all of the reviews are written in recent years, if such a thing exists.

Finally, although there is an index by year and by genre, the overall book is in alphabetical order. I really don't think that was the best way to go, the book is so huge you either have to read the whole thing from A to Z, each film out of context, constantly jump between index and text, or just flick through randomly. I reckon sorting the whole thing by decades would have been smarter, so you could go through it in some kind of order overall.

I don't know what else to recommend in its place, but I do not recommend this book at all.
8 of 12 people found the following review helpful
No longer worth owning: don't buy the cow... 20 July 2012
By James Kunz - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I love books which generate a list of movies you must see/greatest movies ever/etc. There was a time in my life when I went around buying all of them, in fact. And initially this book occupied a prime place on my shelf. Though there were many choices I disagreed with, it was cool seeing the contemporary reaction to a film now considered great. (For instance, though their inclusion here obviously means the paper has since changed its mind, at the time the Times clearly hated both Dawn of the Dead and The Good the Bad and the Ugly.) Plus I really enjoyed reading the individual entries, since the Grey Lady has had her some terrific film writers over the years. Bosley Crowther, Vincent Canby, and Janet Maslin in particular are truly excellent critics.

So why am I giving this book a recommendation? Just for the simple reason that it's no longer worth buying: all these reviews are accessible online. And not just these 1000, but every review the New York Times published about film since the 30s. Let's say you watched Gigi and want to see what the NYT thought of it. Simply type "Gigi New York Times Review" into google and it'll pop up. No worrying about whether it made the Top 1000, no pulling your book down from the bookshelf, and no spending money on a large tome such as this one. If they had written 1000 synopses about the films in question when they published the book that would be one thing, but since this is just a compilation of the original reviews and the original reviews are all online, it's just not worth your money.

All things considered, this might be a decent gift for someone older who doesn't use the internet so much, but if you're even remotely tech-savvy you can save yourself some money.
Reviews not pinpoint 1 May 2015
By Carolyn Hodges - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I did not agree with many of the book's reviews and their descriptions were often more general about the characters themselves and other peripheral details, lacking a more specific response to the overall movie and did not include a scene portrayal or a character portrayal, enjoyed or not.
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