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Coming Attractions: Reading American Movie Trailers (Texas Film and Media) Paperback – November 1, 2004

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"The book raises important questions about what trailers can tell us about ourselves as filmgoers and what clues they can provide to fill gaps in film history. With the release of this book, archivists, scholars, and audiences may never again view trailers in quite the same way." (David Gibson The Moving Image)

About the Author

Lisa Kernan (1952-2006) held a dual appointment at UCLA as the library’s film, television, theater, and photography subject specialist and as a lecturer in the Department of Film, Television, and Digital Media.
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Product Details

  • Series: Texas Film and Media
  • Paperback: 308 pages
  • Publisher: University of Texas Press (November 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0292705581
  • ISBN-13: 978-0292705586
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,160,231 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Gael CHANDLER on July 17, 2005
Format: Paperback
No matter whether you're a film professor, film industry professional, or just plain moviegoer, you'll never look at a trailer (movie preview) the same after reading this book. Written with academic rigor and thoroughness, it explains how previews came to referred to as trailers and analyzes trailers for their intended affect, subtext, and demographic. The book follows the author's passion for examining " the hypothetical spectator that can be read within the trailer texts themselves: an "audience study" who can read through the looking glass of the Hollywood film industry." She submits case studies of some 30 trailers, from Casablanca to Paper Moon to Air Force One, dividing them into three eras. By the end of the book you'll really appreciate these free mini-movie/commercials that we all alternately enjoy and hate yet use to decide whether to see a movie or not.
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Wow, I confess that I feel a little self-conscious writing a negative review in the face of the other 3 positive reviews. I just don't get it. This book is clearly not for practitioners in filmmaking and/or trailer editing. It was written in a very formal academic language which makes it extremely difficult to read and navigate. As a graduate school professor and independent filmmaker myself, I'd like to believe that I'm more familiar with academic writing than would be most readers. Despite this, it remained a real challenge for me to digest. In a nut shell: the book contains a researcher's observations with regard to the history and evolution of the trailer. There is little discussion on the components of trailers, what characteristics make for successful trailers, the difference between trailers across genres, or anything else that a practitioner would take interest. If I had to guess, I'd say this book is simply a publication of someone's PhD dissertation. Bottom line? If you're a academic with a research interest in trailers, this is your book. If you're a practitioner, avoid it like the plague.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Marcio C. Dos Santos on June 26, 2007
Format: Paperback
Its a great book in a field with very few references ( the trailer ) .
As a hollywood trailer researcher was very useful for me .
Congratulations to Lisa Kernan !
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Luciana on October 14, 2009
Format: Paperback
Este libro me viene muy bien para un trabajo que estoy haciendo, hay mucha información bastante dificil de conseguir. Por lo general, en los libros se encuentra un párrafo sobre trailers, salvo algún libro que le dedique un capítulo; pero es muy dificil de conseguir realmente y siempre dicen lo mismo.
Este libro es todo lo contrario, está completamente dedicado a ellos, con información muy práctica y completa.

Sinceramente me dejó más que satisfecha.
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