ZONA: A BOOK ABOUT A FILM ABOUT A JOURNEY TO A ROOM

An Excerpt by Geoff Dyer

“It’s equally pleasing to read Dyer speak up for the pleasures of watching films, not in domesticated and tamed form on DVD, but at the cinema. Stalker itself, which is an immersive experience as much as it’s a visual spectacle, loses its magnetic force when watched at home. Dyer talks about the “possibility of cinema as semi-permanent pilgrimage site”. He also claims ‘the Zone is cinema.’

Beyond the book’s bravura formalism and in spite of the suspicion that it could be viewed as a highbrow take on live-blogging, it’s Dyer’s ability at moments like this to make pilgrims of his readers and to lead them on a journey in search of truths about love and about the nature of happiness that make Zona such an exhilarating achievement.” Sukhdev Sandhu, The Guardian

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Bringing Back Films Alive

A Celluloid Detective’s Adventures in the World’s Deepest, Darkest Vaults and Beyond

By Russell Merritt

When I remember David Shepard, I think of high adventure, the kind that turns film reclamation into a series of quests, conspiracies, improbable partnerships, witty banter, and second story work.

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 TIT FOR TAT (La Piene du talion)
(d. Gaston Velle, France, 1906)

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Dash’s Crib – Where modern crime fiction was born

by Eddie Muller

[John Huston’s film version of Hammett’s The Maltese Falcon celebrates its 75th anniversary this year. Turner Classic Movies presents screenings Feb. 21 and 24 at theaters around the country. For more, click here and for the line-up of TCM Big Screen Classics.  And, as is our policy, look for extras after the article-ed.]

The first time I walked into Sam Spade’s apartment I thought my head would explode. Continue reading

“Call Me Ishmael,” RAY BRADBURY UNBOUND excerpt

John Huston and Ray Bradbury.

John Huston and Ray Bradbury.

This excerpt from Ray Bradbury Unbound, Jonathan R. Eller’s new biography, follows Ray Bradbury’s complex relationship with director John Huston on the making of Moby Dick.

When everyone regrouped in London, tensions were still high between the two men. Casting was finalized during this period, but not before a large dinner at Huston’s private club with some of the production staff and other friends of Huston’s, including the silent film stars Bebe Daniels and her husband Ben Lyon, who had become television entertainers in the U.K. since leaving Hollywood. This group included Jeanie Sims; Lorrie Sherwood; Peter Viertel; Richard Brooks, who had been Huston’s cowriter on Key Largo in 1948; and Jack Clayton, who would go on to direct Room at the Top, The Innocents, and, eventually, Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes. Continue reading