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on 16 June 2014
This is a fairly chunky book which, as it promises, gives you the lowdown on making a short film.

The authors look at various roles in part I, writer, director producer, before looking at pre-production, production, and post-production in parts II-IV. Following this in part V are interviews with filmmakers and in part VI are six short films, accompanied by interviews with those involved in the film and scripts. Part VII takes a look at editing, scriptwriting and scheduling/budget software while Part VIII is about careers, the merit of film school and a history of short films. Part IX and X are great resources as diverse as forms (e.g. for permissions) when you are filmmaking, all the way to top 10 filmmaking blogs.

Because the book looks at who does what in a film, as well as advice from those people in the plethora of interviews provided, it gives you a good idea of what making a short film is like. Of course, it doesn't pretend that a book is a substitute for going out there and doing it but it can prevent some common pitfalls and make you more knowledgeable when you do make a film. The resources are there in the book to take the next step, with valuable advice regarding marketing the film. Although the book is specific to short films, and always keeps its content relevant to this, the vast majority of the advice can be applied to any length of film. If you want more information about making short films, this is a book you should get.
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on 16 March 2015
A nice and easy read. Covers lots of different things, tells you who does what, and covers pre-production, production and post production and marketing. I feels it doesn't go into enough detail about how you do things, eg how you operate the boom, etc. Seems to concentrate on the higher values such as funding, competitions etc, so not really enough technical stuff. But, what it does do is give a very good overview of the way the film industry works, which could be invaluable for those with more ambition than simply doing a home movie.
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on 27 June 2013
I'm taking up a place at film school next year and wanted to get a bit of a head start in the art of making short films (specifically documentaries) which is how I stumbled across this book. I found it to be packed cover-to-cover with all of the essential information necessary for me to get on with it. What I liked best about it is its dual functionality: it's structured like a text book so that if you needed to address a specific issue you could skip straight to the relevant chapter, but it's written in a surprisingly engaging and compelling style so that it's not a chore to sequentially read it through from start to finish. In the process of making my first documentary I consulted a few friends who have been doing it for years but as well as being the recipient of their wisdom, it was also apparent that I could offer something back by way of a couple of the nuggets I'd gleaned from Messrs Thurlow.

In short, essential reading for any budding short film or documentary maker. You'd do well to find a better text to arm yourself with before you set out or indeed if you're already well on your journey. Best of luck!
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on 22 January 2010
This Author was suggested to me by professional scriptwriter, so I had high hopes before reading it. I was not disappointed, from start to finish, this book has an endless supply of important information. The guide never dumbs down film-making, while still keeping it easily understood by all. The book isn't overly long and bulky (as it would be for a feature film-making guide), instead it is conscice. Having written screenplays and short stories before reading this, I found this book taught me simple guidelines to follow and this gave me better results in story/script development. Clifford Thurlow uses excellent examples to forward his points and gives important tips on narrative structure. The segmentation into small chapters, means that whether you're just starting out with a short film idea or about to finish the editing; you'll find this book an essential resource.
This book is an excellent purchase and I would suggest it to any aspiring short film-makers.
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on 23 April 2005
There are tons of books about making feature films, but most people start of with a short and this definitive book is for them. From the clever guide to writing short scripts to screening shorts on TV and at festivals, the writer takes new filmmakers by the hand and leads them every step of the way. At the connected website I found lists of festivals and short film festivals, and Thurlow writes honestly about the problems and pleasures he had directing a short film according to his own theories. The book is witty, entertaining and informative. And that's what we're looking for.
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on 4 February 2016
As an overall book on short filmmaking, it does very well. In fact, there's not much it doesn't cover.

But, it feels slightly unbiased in its views. Of course, every book has a bias, but in art, perhaps there shouldn't be any. In each chapter, and almost every interview with working professionals, it feels like the author is trying to get their views about filmmaking confirmed (what psychologists call "comfirmation bias"), rather than remaining open.

I found that off-putting at times.

In a nutshell: a solid book, but sometimes, with an agenda.

Like a decent newspaper, only one owned by the government.
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on 5 July 2013
This book is simply a must have for anyone (like myself) wanting to either start breaking into the industry, or wants to make a short film to be entered in festivals. Even if you have made a couple already and they've been successful I would still highly recommend getting it for a refresher. There were so many things in the book that I haven't even thought about like press kits, distribution and most importantly all the information is up to date for 2013 and should be relevant for the new few years. It has a ton of useful links for websites with a ton of extra information, it also gives you some amazing interviews with information relevant to the subject. This will be my bible for the next few years when making my short film in the future!
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on 29 June 2005
Read this book from cover to cover in one sitting. For anybody out there who wants to make short movies, don't leave home without it. Making Short Films is essential reading. So, read it, digest it, then go out and do it. TR
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on 9 October 2013
My dad loves it! It arrived 2 days earlier than the 'dispatch email' predicted.
Great quality cover and paper.

Of course I haven't read this but my dad, who has read many many books on movie making, really likes this book and places it amongst the good and useful of his selection.
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on 25 March 2014
It's an amazing book. Good content and great tips and information where to find for example movie scripts. It is more than useful but quite heavy (obviously as it's really big and full of info), can't wait if there will ever be a e-book version to get it! Quick delivery.
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