Reading the Silver Screen: A Film Lover's Guide to Decoding the Art Form That Moves


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ISBN-10 / ISBN-130062113399 / 9780062113399
AuthorThomas C Foster
PublisherHarper Perennial (on 2016-09-13)
Binding TypePaperback
Number Of Pages400
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Product Description

From the New York Times bestselling author of How to Read Literature Like a Professor comes an indispensable analysis of our most celebrated medium, film.

No art form is as instantly and continuously gratifying as film. When the house lights go down and the lion roars, we settle in to be shocked, frightened, elated, moved, and thrilled. We expect magic. While we’re being exhilarated and terrified, our minds are also processing data of all sorts—visual, linguistic, auditory, spatial—to collaborate in the construction of meaning.

Thomas C. Foster’s Reading the Silver Screen will show movie buffs, students of film, and even aspiring screenwriters and directors how to transition from merely being viewers to becoming accomplished readers of this great medium. Beginning with the grammar of film, Foster demonstrates how every art form has a grammar, a set of practices and if-then propositions that amount to rules. He goes on to explain how the language of film enables movies to communicate the purpose behind their stories and the messages they are striving to convey to audiences by following and occasionally breaking these rules.

Using the investigative approach readers love in How to Read Literature Like a Professor, Foster examines this grammar of film through various classic and current movies both foreign and domestic, with special recourse to the “AFI 100 Years-100 Movies” lists. The categories are idiosyncratic yet revealing.

In Reading the Silver Screen, readers will gain the expertise and confidence to glean all they can from the movies they love.

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