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Virgin Film: George Lucas (Virgin Film Series) Paperback – 6 Mar 2003
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'The secret to film is that it is an illusion' George Lucas
The step-by-step companion to the work of George Lucas. George Lucas has directed only five full-length pictures in thirty years, and yet he is one of the most influential of all contemporary filmmakers: not simply a director, he's also a writer, a producer and an unparalleled technical pioneer, responsible for advances in digital projection, CGI and quality cinema sound. Yet he remains defiantly outside the Hollywood system, financing his - and other people's - pictures out of his own funds, creatively answerable to no one but himself.Starting with his time as a film student, this is a critical journey through the films Lucas has directed and actively produced. It encompasses his abstract early works such as Look at Life and 6.18.67, the mainstream successes of American Graffiti, Star Wars and Indiana Jones and the record selling Star Wars prequel trilogy. There is also an extensive section detailing other projects in which he has had a hand, such as Paul Schraeder's Mishima, Haskell Wexler's controversial Latino and Francis Ford Coppola's Tucker: The Man and His Dream.Thsi is an indispensable reference to the work of George Lucas- the mogul, the mythmaker, the one man brand and the most successful independent filmmaker who has ever lived. See all Product description
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
I am not sure exactly who this book is aimed at. Film school student may find the book a little thin on details, casual fans will find it a little dry. There are plenty of tidbits, trivia and anecdotes, but since the book never decides if it is aimed at the general public or USC grad students, it tends to be unsatisfying. Smith also tends to come off as a Lucas apologist. Sometimes he is correct in pointing out the impossible problem of pleasing rabid fans and snooty critics, but at other times he seems to be arguing that Lucas is just "misunderstood," to me a sign of a weak argument.
Smith has obviously done his homework, and his notes about the multiple versions of the film are interesting with out resorting to trainspotting. Speaking of which, his distinctly UK viewpoint is sometimes interesting for it's removed objectivity, but also can get in the way when he must cross cultural barriers to understand the very American Lucas.
Good launching pad for the discussion of Lucas' work, it makes a case that Lucas' main contribution to film has been technical not narrative.