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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Remarkable biography of a remarkable film artist, May 22, 2009
This review is from: My Only Great Passion (Hardcover)
I have been a fan of Carl Th. Dreyer since seeing The Passion of Joan of Arc for the first time during the '90s. Seeing Ordet more recently even heightened my appreciation of this unusual--and underappreciated--film artist.

This biography was a pleasant surprise. It is fitting to the man. It is a highly readable, even occasionally humorous (but quietly so) yet highly informative review of the man's life (including a significant, but not overlong look at his childhood) and his films. One senses one gets to understand the personality of the man--what made him tick--although in saying that, I think most would never understand what makes him tick.

There is ample technical information on the making of each of his major films, using ample interviews and recollections of the man himself plus those who worked with him. Just on the chapter of Ordet itself, I immediately had to view the movie again with all the new information I had. It allowed me gaze in even more awe at the scope of Dreyer's accomplishment.

Dreyer was an artist of great complexity and depth, and this totally unpretentious biography does him justice. Similar to the the great Barry Paris biography of Louis Brooks, I felt the authors truly understood and cared about their subject, yet did not idealize him--human and artistic quirks and weaknesses are openly discussed.

I even think Dreyer, a very private person, would have approved of this biography--which shows a real understanding of the man and his art. And for most, he's not an easy artist to understand!
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My Only Great Passion
My Only Great Passion by Jean Drum (Hardcover - July 26, 2000)
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