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Charlie Kaufman and Hollywood's Merry Band of Pranksters, Fabulists and Dreamers: An Excursion Into the American New Wave Paperback – September 1, 2008

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Derek Hill has written for numerous websites and publications such as The All-Movie Guide, The Third Alternative, and Video Watchdog, and is a contributor to The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Science Fiction and Fantasy. He lives in Portland, Oregon.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Oldcastle Books (September 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1842432532
  • ISBN-13: 978-1842432532
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.7 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #668,285 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

DEREK HILL is the author of Charlie Kaufman and Hollywood's Merry Band of Pranksters, Fabulists and Dreamers (Kamera Books), a study of the films of Charlie Kaufman, Richard Linklater, David O. Russell, Wes Anderson, Sofia Coppla, and others. His book on the films of Terry Gilliam from Schaffner Press as well as Peter Jackson: Interviews (in which he served as editor) as part of the University of Mississippi's Conversations with Filmmakers series are both forthcoming. He has contributed to the Directory of World Cinema: Japan and Directory of World Cinema: American Independent (Intellect), Little White Lies magazine, and to a number of print and online publications. He is also a contributing editor and film critic for the online arts journal Sinescope.

You can visit him online at: http://derekhill.wordpress.com/

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The book exceeded my expectations. It's a brilliant overview of a small group of film artists that may or may not be connected through their language of film. The author gives just the right amount of historical background, delving shortly and poignantly into 60's French cinema and 70's New Hollywood to argue why exactly the re-emergence of semi-independent cinema in the US can rightly be called a New Wave.

The selection of films he focusses on is dead-on. In the limited space of the book he grabs the knowledgeable reader with just the right amount of trivia, background information and analysis. Fervently he argues for the quality of certain overlooked films, mainly Wes Anderson's, all the while providing the reader with a new understanding for beloved modern classics.

Filmmakers mainly dealt with in this book are Richard Linklater, David O. Russell, Wes Anderson, Spike Jonze, Sofia Coppola, Michel Gondry and of course Charlie Kaufman, with smaller parts reserved for the likes of Roman Coppola, Richard Kelly, Steven Soderbergh and PT Anderson. The latter are examined each through one of the movies, while the former group gets both an analysis of their bibliographic and filmographic resumé as well as detailed and individual run-downs of their major cinematic achievements.

Only downside for me was that this extraordinarily entertaining read comes at only 170 pages. But with extensive lists of resources about related books and movies, I will certainly re-visit this book in the future.

If you're interested in the workings of cinema and have a soft spot for some of the aforementioned filmmakers, you owe it to yourself to get this book.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Derek Hill makes a great case for a band of 1990s filmmakers, working in America, being a sort of new New Wave, but even more importantly, making intelligent, witty, sometimes deeply moving films.

It was especially rewarding to me to be reintroduced to the earlier Wes Anderson and Richard Linklater movies, many of which I either didn't see the first time around, or rediscovered with enormous pleasure thanks to the book. One of the things I like best is the format, which is essentially an essay, part lowdown and part theory, about each director, followed by genuinely thoughtful and insightful views of each of the films that director (or writer) had made by the time the book came out in 2008, meaning Hill probably finished writing it in 2007. I wish he'd do an update-- even as an ebook--and give us similarly thoughtful reactions to the films these people have made since then.

Terrific book, and a GREAT guide to movies you may not have seen or might like to revisit.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Good transaction; recommended!
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Charlie Kaufman and Hollywood's Merry Band of Pranksters, Fabulists and Dreamers: An Excursion Into the American New Wave
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