Stanley Kubrick's The Killing touted as being "In All Its Fury and Violence...Like No Other Picture Since 'SCARFACE' and 'LITTLE CAESAR'!" Bay Area mystery writer Muller (his novel Shadow Boxer will be reviewed in the Dec. 9 issue of PW) describes the various styles employed by the studio system, all designed for, in the charming vernacular of theater owners, "putting asses in the seats"; the idiosyncratic promo for Sudden Fear has Joan Crawford staring luridly over a male figure's shoulder at a miniaturized Gloria Grahame embracing Jack Palance. With a clear love for and expertise in his subject matter, Muller tracks the evolution of the form through 275 posters (338 full-color illustrations in all), many of them full-page plates, which look nothing short of smashing in the book's oversize, 10 x 14 format. A series of foreign posters reveal how artists outside the studio system were able to convey a great deal of the films' psychological complexity in a single, giant image. The variety, style and color here, representing films familiar (The Postman Always Rings Twice) and forgotten (The Big Tip Off, starring Cathy Downs), will be enticing to any fan of noir or mid-century American history.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
It is hard to quibble with this gorgeous movie-poster album. Fans of the gritty '40s and '50s flicks that made the reps of Humphrey Bogart, John Garfield, Alan Ladd, Lizabeth Scott, Gloria Grahame, and Ida Lupino, and burnished the already risen stars of Joan Crawford and Barbara Stanwyck, will roll in the 10-by-14-inch volume like cats in 'nip. Collector Muller is suitably systematic about his passion, displaying the book's riches in chapters on various movie studios' poster styles, poster styles outside the U.S. (the Swedish examples are unnervingly up-to-date looking), noir poster iconography, the biggest noir stars, the biggest noir writers (Hammett, Chandler, Cain, and a bevy of obscure screenwriters), and the best noir directors, among whom a director of photography, chiaroscuro virtuoso John Alton, is given pride of place. All this is great, so why kvetch? Well, the text could have been more thoroughly fact checked, edited, and proofed. There are many tiny errors and grammatical gaffes, and one caption ends not only midsentence but midline. (Ah, quit readin' an' lookit th' pitchas.) Ray Olson
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I love the work of Eddie Muller and this complements his literature on Noir. The commentary next to the posters is very informative and good for new enthusiasts.Published 9 months ago by S.M.
For some reason, there seems to be some confusion about film noir books. Don't know why.
THIS is the noir poster book, and Eddie Muller is the man. Read more
Gorgeous deluxe collection of Noir posters, covering both the American and foreign markets. I dock it a star because, like most "mainstream" histories about the movies of... Read morePublished 14 months ago by Barry Goub!er
If you like vintage movie poster art, than this is the book for you. What I thought was so interesting is that the art had a pulpy look to it. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Kurt Gunnarson
I recently reviewed Alain Silver's FILM NOIR GRAPHICS in paperback in which I found excellent descriptions of American and foreign posters of films noirs. Read morePublished on May 13, 2013 by Dr. Ronald Schwartz
The other reviewers have pretty much said it all. I am adding just two minor quibbles that led me to a four star rating. Read morePublished on February 14, 2013 by Screamin' Steve
For a Movie Buff, this makes the best gift for the holidays. I have a Film Noir lover in the family, and this book is going to be hands down his best gift of the season. Read morePublished on November 25, 2012 by Christine Doran
the book was all i thought it would be. beautiful color images, nicely detailed blurbs about the movie postures, additional info about the actors. Read morePublished on April 22, 2012 by jp