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Ishiro Honda: A Life in Film, from Godzilla to Kurosawa Hardcover – October 3, 2017

4.5 out of 5 stars 24 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"[Up] to the challenge, a major achievement ... as authoritative a biography as [Honda] will probably ever receive. If you loved these movies as a kid (or even continue to do so in adulthood), this book will be mighty hard to put down."―Steve Mcfarlane, Cineaste Magazine

"Ishiro Honda: A Life in Film, from Godzilla to Kurosawa accomplishes a lot in under 350 pages. Perhaps most impressively, it provides the reader with a lasting sense of the man―his temperament, values, philosophies, dreams, and disappointments―behind some of cinema's most beloved characters (Godzilla, Rodan, Mothra), while also exhaustively detailing the lifelong Toho director's entire body of work (much of which is unavailable in the U.S. and even Japan)."―Chris Shields, Film Comment

"Assembled from years of meticulous research, and detailing the entirety of Honda's filmmaking spectrum, this prestige book offers an in-depth, revealing portrait of the man―as well as his movies―on a level previously unseen by western audiences."―Patrick Galvan, SYFY Wire

"[A] must-own title for anyone interested in Japanese science-fiction and Japanese cinema in general."―Patrick Galvan, Toho Kingdom

"Ishiro Honda: A Life in Film, From Godzilla to Kurosawa should serve as a model of how to do a film biography―any biography, really. Beautifully designed and produced, Ishiro Honda incorporates many illustrative photographs of the Japanese director and his associates without becoming a coffee table book; the text is clearly written, free of academic jargon or fanboy effusions; the book answers to a need as the first full-length account in English of Honda."―David Luhrssen, Shepherd Express

"[A]n appreciation of Japanese fantasy-film history through the eyes of a filmmaker whose name is obscure but populism remains influential."―Christopher Borrelli, Chicago Tribune

"[A] wider, deeper and more valuable examination of not only one man's career, but also the life that produced it and the system that nurtured it―and almost destroyed it."―Mark Schilling, The Japan Times

"[Up] to the challenge, a major achievement ... as authoritative a biography as [Honda] will probably ever receive. If you loved these movies as a kid (or even continue to do so in adulthood), this book will be mighty hard to put down."―Steve Mcfarlane, Cineaste Magazine

"Where the authors really triumph is in the wealth of information provided about the autobiographical, historical and cultural context to Honda's work ... The impression gained from this impressively researched tome is of a self-effacing yet highly accomplished director with his own distinctive vision, who despite being hamstrung by the success of his most famous film managed a career that fully justifies the comprehensive and in-depth consideration presented here."―Jasper Sharp, Sight & Sound: The International Film Magazine

Review

"This carefully researched and detailed book gives us a full picture of the man and his life."―From the preface by Martin Scorsese

"I first saw Godzilla in 1956 at the tender age of eight. Something about the film filled me with a somber dread―not the giant, fire-breathing monster destroying Tokyo, but the overall tone, an underlying sadness, a sense of grief and horror. Japan is the only nation to suffer atomic bombs dropped on two of its cities, and Godzilla gave powerful expression to this emotional ambience disguised as a giant monster movie. The director of this seminal motion picture was Ishiro Honda, the creator of an astonishing output of science-fiction and horror films from Toho Studios and one of my personal cinematic gods."―John Carpenter

"Exhaustive researchers, Ryfle and Godziszewski delve deeply into the entirety of Honda's sometimes harrowing life while defining his films within Japanese studio system and his later collaborations with Kurosawa. Filling a huge vacuum of needed scholarship, it's required reading for genre fans and serious students of Japanese cinema alike."―Stuart Galbraith IV, author of The Emperor and the Wolf

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24 customer ratings
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Reviewed in the United States on October 3, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on January 7, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on November 2, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on October 28, 2017
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Top international reviews

Hedorah
5.0 out of 5 stars Endlich ein Buch über Honda
Reviewed in Germany on November 6, 2017
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