Making Movies

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  1. Andy Orrock says
    32 of 32 people found the following review helpful:
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Bought for the wrong reason…still worth it, November 17, 2000
    By 
    Andy Orrock (Dallas, TX) –
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    This review is from: Making Movies (Paperback)

    A friend recommended this book saying, “I’m not sure you want to learn about making movies, but this is a great project management book.”

    Well…I could see his point, but I didn’t feel the same way about the book. There’s a thin thread throughout about the way Lumet conducts his movie project, most evident in the book’s best chapter (7) entitled “Shooting the Movie: At Last!” The pieces of the puzzle all fall together at that point, and you get a true sense of everyone’s responsibilities and how Lumet plans and uses these resources. So yeah, that’s project management.

    But if you’re going to buy this book, buy it because you’re interested in how movies get made, starting right from how a script is chosen, through to the preview. From that perspective, it’s a great book. Again, in the book’s best chapter, you get a sense for just how draining – and unglamourous – it is to actually shoot the movie. Early pick-ups, lots of work with stand-ins to get the set (esp. lighting) right, multiple takes, late-night viewing of rushes. This is tough work, and Lumet describes it clear, concise language. And he pulls no punches as to where his frustrations lay in the process.

    Roger Ebert’s cover blurb states “I am sometimes asked if there is one book a filmgoer could read to learn more about how movies are made and what to look for while watching them. This is the book.” I’d say that’s a very accurate summation of what you’ll find here.

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  2. Burak Kilic says
    19 of 19 people found the following review helpful:
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Director’s On The Line., May 6, 2003
    By 
    Burak Kilic (Istanbul, TURKEY) –

    This review is from: Making Movies (Paperback)

    I’ve read ‘Making Movies’ for my ‘Visual Communication’ class, in which we examined visual sources that ranged from pictorial representations to actual films. I must admit, however, that the book was a real joy to read, and Lumet a master to know closely.

    As the other reviewers have mentioned, Lumet’s style makes it easy for everyone to understand and get a grasp of what it takes to shoot a movie, from reading a scenario, to bringing together a cast, from dealing with actors to trying to stay within the budget. The book’s procession is designed in such a way, that your curiosity increases as you flip through the chapters. (You begin to wonder if the film’s going to get ready in time.)

    Lumet, as the director of many films, should be considered as a real master in the film industry. He has worked with important actors such as Sean Connery frequently, and succeeded in putting together remarkable films, like ‘Twelve Angry Men’. He tells the audience exactly how he’s felt and what he’s thought during the making of the movies. He expresses the stress he’s had when the actors did not show up on time, when the weather conditions changed dramatically or when the production company announced to cut off a significant portion of the film budget. He also depicts his delight when he’s got astonishing performance from his actors and actresses, when the cameraman managed to do a better job than he had even planned. His telling of these remarks are inspiring, indeed.

    ‘Making Movies’ is a great source, although not necessarily a technical source, for all people either working or interested in the film world. A wonderful book to both read and have in shelf.

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  3. D. Lee "Fire Horse" says
    32 of 39 people found the following review helpful:
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    Aptly titled, mostly, December 22, 1998
    By 
    D. Lee “Fire Horse” (Thousand Oaks, California) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    This review is from: Making Movies (Hardcover)

    Get this book if you want to know what a year-in-the-life of a powerhouse filmmaker is like. If you are a beginner with an indie, much of Lumet’s experiences are not going to apply. They are simply going to make you want to work harder on your indie so that you can get where he got! However, Lumet does NOT deceive. He never promises you any how-to information. He simply calls his book “Making Movies”, and that is exactly the subject matter to which he sticks. His honesty does not go unnoticed, although he maybe should have called the book, “Making MY Movies”.

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