An Illustrated History of Filmmaking, by Adam Allsuch Boardman (Nobrow Books, 2018)

An overview of the development of motion pictures, from pre-photographic days to the present. Good-looking but insubstantial introduction: the scope of the subject renders this patchy despite its intentions. A sense of Boardman working towards something: the follow-up volume (on UFOs) is a more focused beast. The images are great though.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

Made Men: The Story of GoodFellas, by Glenn Kenny (Hanover Square Press, 2020)

A history of the making and reception of Martin Scorsese’s 1990 film, itself based on Nicholas Pileggi’s book Wiseguy. A swaggering, exhaustive and detailed account of the movie, with new interviews accompanying archive material. A great book for anyone who’s a fan of the film and/or its director, and tons of fun in its own right. Recommended.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

Thunderbook: The World of Bond According to SmershPod, by John Rain (Polaris, 2019)

An overview of the Eon James Bond films to date. And not a very good one, either. Unlike the genial podcast which this book spins off from, this film-by-film precis doesn’t add much more than scattershot snark and the same overworked observations. A few useful bits of trivia emerge, but this is a disappointing, laboured, and repetitive effort.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

The Shining [Devil’s Advocates], by Laura Mee (Auteur Publishing, 2017)

A monograph on the Stanley Kubrick adaptation of the Stephen King novel. And a good one too; a smart, detailed and perceptive commentary on the movie, its production and reception. Academic but accessible, and even-handed in its analysis of the continuing significance of the movie as a popular culture touchstone. Recommended.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England

The Silence of the Lambs [Devil’s Advocates], by Barry Forshaw (Auteur Publishing, 2013)

A smart, clear, and diligent monograph on the Jonathan Demme-directed adaptation of the Thomas Harris novel. Straightforward and effective, this short book covers the movie and its source material, as well as the wider impact of Lecter in print and film, as well as in genre. Recommended.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England

The Blair Witch Project, by Russ Gomm (Arrow Books, 2018)

A folk history of the making of and the later life of horror movie The Blair Witch Project. Taking a fan perspective, but able also to offer contrary opinions, this monograph successfully presents an overview of the movie and indicates why – not least in production and in marketing terms – Blair Witch is still an influential film.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England

Odeon Relics: Nineteen-Thirties Icons in the Twenty-First Century, by Philip Butler (Art Deco Magpie, 2019)

A photo-book of the surviving Art Deco cinemas originally built for the Odeon chain. A lovely bit of social history; each image is presented with a brief overview of the building in question’s life. Some continue as movie houses, others are bingo halls, are derelict, churches, shops, nightclubs. As the book indicates, fewer than half of the 140 built remain, and none of them are unchanged.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.