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Kubrick Paperback – July 10, 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Grove Press; Reprint edition (July 10, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802138187
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802138187
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 5.4 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #624,979 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

This slim volume comprises one man's impressions of one of our most provocative filmmakers. Stanley Kubrick's death in 1999 and the posthumous release of his last film, Eyes Wide Shut, prompted much revisionist exploration of his workDbut none is to be found here. Herr (Dispatches), who collaborated with Kubrick on the screenplay of Full Metal Jacket, doesn't deign to simplify complexities or dispel misconceptions. Nor does he offer particularly compelling insights. No pretense is made toward biography. In fact, much of what Herr presents is candid speculation. Kubrick is depicted as a man of dichotomies: an intellectual who was also a fan of popular culture, an American expatriate in England who never fully abandoned his Hollywood roots, and an artist whose vision married both beauty and violence. More than merely an account of a friendship, this is an elegy to and a meditation upon the Kubrick legend. All but the largest film collections may be hard pressed to justify expenditure on this modest book.
-DJayne Plymale, Univ. of Georgia, Athens
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"'They say [Kubrick] had no personal life, but that's ridiculous. It would be more correct to say that he had no professional life, since everything he did was personally done' Michael Herr; 'Kubrick is a captivating little book rather like an Arthur Miller play: it plays out on a small scale but invokes the epic themes of friendship, art, sex and war it is intimate, honest and affectionate' Guardian" --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 8, 2001
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Originally meant as a "Vanity Fair" profile to herald the release of "Eyes Wide Shut", the material in Michael Herr's "Kubrick" was eventually published by the magazine as a eulogy. Regardless, Herr's intentions were honorable -- to introduce a Kubrick who was warm, witty and tireless in his quest for good conversation.
This somewhat restores the balance for fans who thought that Frederic Raphael's "Eyes Wide Open" unjustly underscored criticism of the director as a paranoid misanthrope. The Kubrick in Herr's book is eccentric, but never morose. In fact, whether he's talking current events, "The Godfather" or Homer, the director often comes off as an engaging smart ... who just wants to know everything.
Herr also offers some snapshots of Kubrick's artistic process -- such as the tight-ship handling of the "Full Metal Jacket" set and the initial preparations of the "Eyes Wide Shut" promotional campaign. But, ultimately, "Kubrick" is Herr's defense of his friend and little more. A touching, and literate, gesture, but not essential for those more interested in Kubrick's body of work than in his personal demeanor.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By R. W. Rasband VINE VOICE on July 10, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This is not just a reprint of Herr's "Vanity Fair" piece about Kubrick (although there's nothing wrong with republishing articles in book form--remeber Tom Wolfe's "Radical Chic"?) The final section of this small book is a brand new hell-raising defence of "Eyes Wide Shut" as a modern masterpiece: Herr also assails those critics who he believes did dirt to the memory of Kubrick.. Herr is a very seductive, stylish writer, and this memoir of the late, great director is loving, but clear-eyed and a good antidote to Fredric Raphael's vitriolic "Eyes Wide Open."
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Matthew Cheney on April 11, 2002
Format: Paperback
Michael Herr wrote this book to restore some balance to the discussions of Stanley Kubrick after his death -- as Herr notes, "The strangely contentious and extremely disrespectful tone that lurked inside so many of the obituaries and tributes was unpleasant to the many people who loved Stanley, but not surprising." The reviews of Kubrick's final, and probably unfinished, film Eyes Wide Shut didn't help -- with a few exceptions, the critics seemed happy to use the film to confirm all of their preconceived notions of Kubrick's life and art.
Herr's book offers a pleasant defense of his friend, as well as some interesting and amusing anecdotes, but little more than that. Personally, I'd hoped he would reveal more about how he and Kubrick worked on Full Metal Jacket, but the film is seldom talked about directly, though it is often mentioned, tantalizingly, in passing. Ultimately, the book is little more than a long magazine article put into hardcover; it's nice to have, and would make a fine gift for a Kubrick fan, but it's definitely not a "must-have" book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 19, 2000
Format: Hardcover
"Kubrick" is intended as an antidote to all the "other" post mortems about the late director though it only adds to the heap of this strange, new, albeit fascinating, genre. Here, Kubrick is boy wonder from the Bronx who had to do whatever he did in life to defeat the evils of LA. The book is worth reading for its informative, understanding portrayal of the man but more so as a timely statement as to how artists are (mis)treated and (un)regarded in this country. Much has been said of Herr's lenghty postscript analyzing and defending "Eyes Wide Shut" but I think this is actually the best part of the book because of its crazy passion and regard for film as art but also for its indictment of spineless, narrow-minded critics.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 16, 2000
Format: Hardcover
From the SK discussion:
"I received Michael Herr's newbook KUBRICK from Amazon.com yesterday. Much to my surprise anddisappointment, this book is nothing more than a reprint of the two articles that he wrote for Vanity Fair magazine. I assumed that the previously published Vanity Fair material would be incorporated into this book, and greatly expanded upon. But no - they're all you get! There is no new material here, except for one photograph of Kubrick on p.64 that I don't think has been published before. The essays themselves are excellent, but you'd think it would include something besides material that had already appeared in two issues of a magazine that went for $3.95 apiece. Gary"
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 17, 2000
Format: Hardcover
If you read the tremendous Vanity Fair articles written by Michael Herr on Kubrick, there is no real need to order this book. The book is merely the two articles in a bound volume.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By SmallestStep on March 3, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This book should be used as a companion while studying Kubrick, as Herr discusses Kubrick as a man and a friend rather than going into Stanley's films in depth. The book is well written, flows easily, and brings the legendary director to life.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By John William Davis on April 12, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I have loved Michael Herr's DISPATCHES since I first read it several years ago. I was very excited when I saw Herr's name under the title of this biography. Kubrick is one of my favorite filmmakers and Herr is one of my favorite writers. I bought this book immediately after I saw it and I am very pleased with the purchase. There is something about Herr's writing style that is just beautiful. His words seem to have a wonderful flow to them. This book is rather short, I read it in one evening. If you love either Michael Herr or Stanley Kubrick you should buy it. If you love the work of both of them, you will enjoy it as much as I did. For me, reading this book was like spending time for several hours with two fascinating talents.
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