Review by Library Journal Review
DIY film literature grows with these two additions to the genre. Drawing on many years of experience as a screenwriting professor and story analyst, Gilles (NYU Tisch Sch. of the Arts; The Screenwriter Within) now attempts to venture into a broader topic: the experience of going through film school. Readers hoping for a comprehensive encapsulation will be disappointed. Direction is only touched on and technical aspects are barely considered in favor of a focus on writing (not a bad strategy for film beginners to adopt). Included are essays on finding script ideas, writing exercises, writing short scripts, and rewriting, as well as extensive guidance on treatment writing and outlining and advice about working with agents. Filmmakers Mark and Michael Polish employ a drastically different style and method, culling their experience writing, producing, and directing three moderately successful feature films-Norfolk, Jackpot, and Twin Falls Idaho. Chronicled here is the entire filmmaking process, from conception and fund-raising to shooting and finishing to selling and marketing one's film. Overall, the Polish brothers, joined by Jonathan Sheldon, head of their company's development, write in a way that illuminates the details more clearly than most technical scribes. While this approach doesn't raise Declaration above some of the genre's standards, e.g., Lenny Lipton's Independent Filmmaking, the authors' narrative form will certainly appeal to aspiring filmmakers. Meanwhile, what Gilles really offers is explicit guidance on film writing; that isn't to say that his book doesn't have a place in the growing canon of filmmaking books for neophytes, just that the title is misleading. Both works are recommended for general collections and especially for film libraries and performing arts collections.-Michael Tierno, New York (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.