In this lively blend of travelogue and film history, Los Angeles Times film critic Turan details the inner workings of 12 of the world's 400-plus film festivals, capturing the essence of each. More broadly, he shows how festivals have become a "growth industry" providing filmmakers with an "an alternate p.r. universe" and fans a symposium on the "nature of the cinematic experience." For standard bearers like Sundance and Cannes, the thrust is, despite the hype, to uncover new films that surprise audiences and make "dreams come true" for filmmakers. Aesthetically driven festivals, like Italy's silents-only Pordenone, run on the commitment of organizers and patrons who believe in a given film genre or set of artistic tenets. But most indicative of film's life-affirming power are the festivals set in poor or war-torn lands, such as Burkina Faso or Bosnia-Herzegovina. There, organizers and audiences take many risks to ensure that a film is available, for to them it marks a "determination not to be alone in the world." Add to these aesthetic overviews Turan's well-observed social tableaux the "pleasantly schizophrenic interaction between the minions of Hollywood and the scruffy independent world" of Sundance, the flashy yet "privileged look behind the scenes at the interlocking gears of the theatrical experience" at Vegas's ShoWest and the film festival portraits are complete. Turan's easy erudition and wholehearted pleasure in the film experience infuse the book, making it, like a good movie, a multilayered delight. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
In this slim volume, Los Angeles Times film critic Turan surveys a variety of film festivals in terms of importance and scope, giving a brief overview of the famous (Cannes) and the more obscure (Lone Pine). Four sections discuss different festivals in terms of business (Cannes, Sundance, and ShoWest), geopolitical issues (Fespaco, Havana, Sarajevo, and Midnight Sun), aesthetics (Pordenone, Lone Pine, and Telluride), and the politics of festivals in general. Turan observes, "Though the gathering didn't even have a name, and any thoughts of making it an annual event would have seemed preposterous, this was the first Pordenone Festival. There were only eight guests." Turan also evaluates a festival that failed in Sarasota, FL, and relates his experience as a juror in Montreal. Experiencing an inside look at these festivals and discovering the lesser-known ones such as Fespaco (African film) held in Burkina Faso and Pordenone (silent cinema) in Italy are what make this book interesting. This enjoyable and well-informed read for fest fans and film students is recommended for academic and public libraries. Barbara Kundanis, Batavia P.L., IL
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.