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Spike Lee: Interviews (Conversations with Filmmakers) Paperback


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Spike Lee: Interviews (Conversations with Filmmakers) + Spike Lee: That's My Story and I'm Sticking to It + The Spike Lee Reader
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Product Details

  • Series: Conversations with Filmmakers
  • Paperback: 276 pages
  • Publisher: University Press of Mississippi; First Edition edition (May 6, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1578064708
  • ISBN-13: 978-1578064700
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,110,504 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Filmmaker Lee's focus on race has rather obscured the fact that in 15 years he has amassed a diverse body of work that encompasses small-scale dramas, ambitious biopics, documentaries, and concert films, not to mention commercials, music videos, and seven books. That variety is reflected in the 22 interviews in this volume. Race is at the forefront of most of the pieces, but Lee also touches on subjects ranging from cutting-edge digital-video technology to his beloved Knicks. The chronological presentation shows Lee mellowing somewhat over the years--he was only 29 when he burst on the scene with She's Gotta Have It (1986)--but he remains outspoken and controversial; promoting his most recent film, Bamboozled, he blasts the demeaning roles contemporary black actors choose to portray. Lee possibly has the highest profile of any director today, thanks to his acting gigs, notably in Nike commercials reprising his Mars Blackmon character, and talk-show appearances (three of which are transcribed here). Libraries may see greater interest in this than in similar books on other filmmakers. Gordon Flagg
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

"I've been blessed with the opportunity to express the views of black people... I have to take advantage of that while I'm still bankable." -Spike Lee

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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Bonita L. Davis on January 20, 2003
Format: Paperback
Shelton Lee is the most controversial film maker of his time because his work defies convention and upsets the conventional values of Hollywood. The spotlight has shone on Spike Lee since his "She's Gotta Have It" exploded on the screen. Spike Lee is a film maker par excellence and is this book we get an opportunity to hear his voice dealing with the entire corpus of his work since 2001.
Spike Lee Interviews is a collection of interviews dating from 1986 through 2001. They are originally reprinted in the form in which they appeared; hardcopy, television and on line. In them we get to hear the ideas, opinions and reflections that Lee has about his craft, the criticism of his work and the need to confront the racist myths prevelant in the film industry. His words are sharp, biting and reflective.
In perusing this book you will see the development of Lee as a film maker and astute businessman. He refuses to co-op his integrity with Hollywood depictions of Blacks and yet he is able to use Hollywood to get some of his pictures made. Lee also uses unusual ideas and film techniques that many of his peers won't touch. He is not afraid to be uncoventional in his story telling nor in his use of new technological forms.
I enjoyed his repartee with the interviewers regarding his controversial image. Spike says his critics need to look at his work rather than him. He doesn't mind talking about his beloved Knicks but moves beyond the game and tells about the exploitation of players and the system. He admits his mistakes in portraying Black women as one dimensional.
In reading this book you will get a multideminsional view of a film maker who has opened a new chapter in African American cinematography. Lee picks up the ball where others left off and challenges the whole idea of what it means to make a film. You will enjoy his ideas and have a deeper appreciation of his work.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By soulonice on February 18, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book gave me more insight into the man behind some of my favorite films of all-time. There are a lot of his films I have not seen yet, but after reading the many interviews and getting more out of Lee than ever, I'm motivated to own all of his films. It was cool to see how he comes up with his scripts, some of the challenges he faced in bringing them to life, and some of the criticizing he gets constantly about him, and not his work. He seems to be very aware of who he is and is also aware of the fact he cannot do this alone. He gives props to people throughout the interviews, from the woman who plays Nola in "She's Gotta Have It" to Ernest Dickerson, to Jada Pinkett Smith, to John Singleton, and so on. The one thing I gained more than anything though is he really makes people think when you watch his movies and when you hear or read what he has to say. Love him or hate him, you have to respect him. I recommend this to anyone who is a fan of his work and to people who may not know much about him other than what is seen in the media.
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