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The Story of Hollywood: An Illustrated History
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44 of 47 people found the following review helpful
on December 4, 2006
The Story of Hollywood is a beautiful and faithful photographic journey through Hollywood from about 1850 to the present. It is the reality behind the glam. But somehow it is more glamourous than the illusion. I grew up in the Hollywood hills in the 60's and 70's - and frequented the boulevard and side streets. I don't think I have ever had more powerful feelings of deja vu than what this book invoked. It reminds me of Berenice Abbott's work in NYC. If you love Hollywood - If you love movies and want to understand where they really come from - you need to buy this book. Gregory Williams needs to be congratulated for what will be considered the definitive historical reference on Hollywood - yet it does not read or view like a history book. I am very pleased with my purchase!
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on October 10, 2006
I was bowled over by the research and attention to detail in this amazing book. It shows the true story of what has been happening to Hollywood for years, and I found it very moving. The photos are generally quite small, but there are a lot of them. This is the book that I wish I had written. A wonderful and fascinating account of my favorite small town in the big city!
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on November 24, 2006
Majestic and meticulously researched. Kudos to the author and publisher of this compelling book that should be a staple in every film, tv and production executives library. I discovered information about Hollywood I never knew - and the images to go along with it! You can actually get the sense from the way the author tells the story, about how people lived, worked and made Hollywood one of the most famous places on the planet. I highly recommend The Story of Hollywood to anyone who is interested in learning more about the real Hollywood. The images alone are worth the purchase price. Perfect holiday gift.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
I really enjoyed this book. I devoured the photographs first, and then I went back and read the text -- it's really good. I can see there's a feast of information newly uncovered, which is great. And with every page, I kept being shocked no one had done this before. And being pleased that it has been done so well the first time. I had no idea what was going on right now with "preservation" of Hollywood, and the details that are infuriating and amazing. But what really gets me are those early, early photos of the place as it was developing. Wow!

[...]
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on October 27, 2008
I was born and raised in Hollywood. My parents co-founded a small family business in the center of Hollywood in 1946. I remember much of Hollywood from the 1960's through the present. This book really branches the stories and places I heard about from my parents, friends, and my own memories and life experiences. It is a treat to read. I have given copies of this book to my Aunt and Uncle who also lived and worked in Hollywood in the 40's and 50's (my Aunt attended to Hollywood High). I appreciate the accuracy and love that went into this book--It was exhaustively vetted. It is sad however, that those holding positions of responsibility (elected officials and private organizations) have given lip service to preservation in the backlight of rapid demolition of historic places in Hollywood to make way for cookie-cuter and hi-rise development.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on February 22, 2009
For anyone who is seriously interested in the history of the quasi-city known as Hollywood (as opposed to "Hollywood" - the concept for the world of movies in general). This book goes into a level of detail almost unparalleled in any other book on any other "city". From pristine lemon groves and Victorian mansions, to posh golden age nightclubs, to skid row blight and to a final sort of rebirth, the author traces the story with mind blowing photos and fascinating research (which contrary to some other reviews I found to be quite accurate). Strangely, now as I walk down Hollywood Blvd. I can actually close my eyes and visualize what once was. This is a must have book, not only for movie lovers and Los Angeles historians, but for anyone fascinated with how urban areas evolve and why historic buildings such be preserved and cherished.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on November 30, 2007
This book is Fantastic and would be a great asset to any book collection or library. There are fabulous photos and the facts are absolute fact. I have been an authority on Hollywood for years. I have lived here all my life and worked at some of the studios that no longer exist. Mr. Williams did an attention to detail on this book.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on March 12, 2008
There will always be errors on a work of this nature, that the work should be condemmed for it would do diservice on the overall project.
I have been a Hollywood kid and adult for 70 plus years and have really
taken a great nostalgia trip with this book. Just the photos alone are priceless. The book may have a limited appeal to someone who grew up in the Midwest. For me personally it is really a keepsake.
Mister old Hollywood
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on January 13, 2008
This book is a great addition to any Hollywood fantatics library. This book gives you a totally complete history about how Hollywood came about and how it has since evolved. If you are looking for fluff and trash look elsewhere. Great and interesting reading.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on November 14, 2007
This is one of the better photographic Histories about Hollywood. It's a deluxe volume providing sufficient text and photographic material to satisfy any reader seeking an introduction to the subject. Many of the photographs are rare and impressive, albeit small for the most part. I can't think of any comparative book that treats the evolution of the Hollywood that we know today as well as this book does. I don't think a prospective buyer will be disappointed.
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