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Film After Film: (Or, What Became of 21st Century Cinema?) Hardcover – August 21, 2012

3.8 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Elegiac and anxious, critical and poetic, Film After Film surveys the current seismic shifts in movies and considers their effect on the cinematic imagination ... [Hoberman's] prose shines without qualification, and the selections remind us that his tenure at the Voice was, simply put, one of the greatest ever by an American film critic, influencing as it did an entire generation of writers."—Bookforum

"A brilliant, patchwork statement about the future of the cinema—spoiler alert: there is a future—in the face of reports of its imminent demise...Hoberman’s book is a broadly accessible errand in the articulation of how we might imagine digital cinema to reflect twenty-first century culture."—Los Angeles Review of Books

"Spirited, thought-provoking and popping with fresh perspectives."—Wall Street Journal

"[Film After Film] does what Hoberman does best: use movies and movie culture as a prism for understanding political events—and vice versa."—Film Comment


 “J. Hoberman is probably the most acute political analyst of cinema among 
the medium’s regular commentators. You won’t find a closer reading of how films made in the first decade or so of the twenty-first century intermeshed with the issues of their day than this volume.” Nick James, Sight and Sound

“Hoberman wittily traces the interlocking of political reality and moviemaking fantasies, to often disturbing effect.” Financial Times 

“A dense, fascinating assemblage … by turns jocular and brilliantly reflective.” Cineaste
 


From the Trade Paperback edition.

About the Author

J. Hoberman was the senior film critic at the Village Voice from 1988 to 2012. He has taught at Harvard, NYU and Cooper Union, and is the author of ten books, including Bridge of Light, The Red Atlantis, The Dream Life and An Army of Phantoms.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Verso; First Edition, First Printing edition (August 21, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844677516
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844677511
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.1 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,368,047 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I picked this book up when it was released, as a movie fan and someone who likes reading a good critique, and I found it entertaining, well-written and a little depressing. Mr. Hoberman basically ties two narrative themes together, America post 9-11 and the mass acceptance and introduction of non-celluloid or "Digital" film. It is a little obtuse at times, quoting critics like Marshall Mcluhan with an ease and off-handedness that assumes the reader is at least passingly familiar with them, and the theme is relentlessly negative and there are liberal bon mots sprinkled through the text(the man is clearly not a fan of either post editing or the Bush administration) that seem unnecessary but, overall, it's a great critique of cinema from the last twelve years and isn't so academic to make it unreadable for the average ignoramus(like myself).
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've admired most of what Hoberman has written on films for quite some time, and bought this book with big expectations.

I do not think that the thoughts Hoberman offers on the fate of 21st Century Cinema, with respect to its fate in the previous century, are among his best; I think Hoberman is better off when he focuses on a certain number of films, and writes as a film critic more than a film theorist, still, it was a pleasurable read for a film fan.
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Format: Hardcover
I have the book, and to me, it's an excellent, deep and poetically insightful study of how movies have become digital, and thus, no longer of the camera's reality, but by digital manipulation made.

Several film sites review "Film After Film"... One of the best is:

[...]

(I hope linking to that review is allowed. avclub.com is a cool movie and book review site, and their review, by John Semley there, does a fine job of professionally discussing J. Hoberman's book.)

Like most of Hoberman's writing, this book is more poetic and deeply developed than say, Denby or Thomson, but that's because he's a historian, a professor of film, and a social scholar as well as a film reviewer. He recently co-wrote a catalog for the Whitney Museum of American Art with curator Jay Sanders, and has written on the Jewish theatre in New York CIty. So his writing is not breezy, although often is anecdotal and joyous, the way I find a favorite film book of mine, City of Nets: A Portrait of Hollywood in the 1940's by Otto Friedrich. Another book I highly recommend.

Hoberman's book is perhaps a double-feature for City of Nets, as it takes New York City from say 1999 to 2012, with the shock and horrors of the Twin Towers falling as the end of film (my condensation). He says in his preface, which outlines his intentions with the book:

"No less than Titanic or The Lord of the RIngs trilogy or the saga of Harry Potter (and actually, a good deal more so,) the events of 9/11 were a show of cinematic might.
This is not to say that twentieth-century cinema no longer exists - even ninteenth-century cinema is with us still.
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