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Not the definitive book on ILM's recent years
on 30 October 2011
Having been a huge fan of the previous two ILM books The Art Of Special Effects and Into The Digital Realm) I was excited to see this book coming out , bring upto date ILM's work in more recent times. Having now had the opportunity to read the book I feel a degree of disappointment and a missed opportunity.
Firstly compared to the previous two books it looks smaller and thinner and this is explained by the use of non- glossy paper, a huge mistake when you are presenting lavish movie images.
Secondly the quality of the images ranges from the shocking (blurred, grainy) to exceptional and this is extremely disappointing as the previous two books overcame this very well. An example of what you are in for can be found in the first four pages- a horrible double page spread of a matte painting from Kuosawa's 'Dreams' which looks like it has been lifted from an old VHS copy to an incredibly crisp image from Iron Man 2 accompanying Jon Favreau's introduction to the book. The book is full of these contrasts and it is a shame as clean images of these shots can be found in a variety of magazines.
Then there is the complete omission of 'Hulk' which contains some of the most difficult effects shot ever produced by ILM'S at the time. This alone gets one star dropped for this book.
All in all I would recommend people get the book for the many great images of those fantastic movies that it does contain but be prepared to grimace every 3rd or 4th page as you get a grainy, blurred image. This could and should have been so much better and the author could have learnt a thing or two from looking at the previous two ILM books rather that trying to deny their existence as the narrative in this book often hints at.