Boulder Weekly 7.15.21

Page 30

Let’s Go Out! It’s Time... Reading cinema

Two new movie-loving books for summer reading

by Michael J. Casey


hey always say write the book that you want to read,” Brad Weismann says. “I was looking for a reference book that covered

found that there wasn’t one. ... I thought: Well, there’s a need there. I should probably try to Lost in the Dark: A World History of Horror Film is the accumulation of four years of work and hundreds and hundreds of movies watched, “good, bad and indifferent.” being exemplary of a particular period or a particular style,” Weismann says, “But [Lost in the Dark] is not encyclopedic in the sense that it’s 800 pages

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Instead, Weismann focused on larger themes: iconic performers (Lon Chaney), studios (Universal monster movies) and historical periods (Hammer horror, Italian giallo, etc.), and then built outward to establish common trends. “It does seem that every time society is in Weismann says, pointing to Spanish horror made during the reign of Francisco Franco. At the time, movies were heavily censored, and anything critical ers set their stories in Germany or France and left it to the audience to connect the dots. “The zeitgeist of that time squeaks out thanks adding that victims in these movies are often “the ones who smoke pot and have sex. Kind of like

ON THE BILL: ‘Lost in the Dark: A World History of Horror Film’ discussion with Brad Weismann and Ron Bostwick. 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 12, Boulder Book Store. Tickets:

You transgress the cultural norm, and immediately you’re food for monsters.” Digging through horror’s history is a way to peer into the psychology of the time, even how we view the acts of today. As Weismann points out, Life’ is available now from when insurgents attacked the U.S. Capitol on Jan. Sutherland books. 6, the images we saw resembled The Purge movies with shocking similarities. How did we get here? Horror has a few ideas. If horror’s not your cup of tea, then Ira Wells’ 400-page portrait Norman Jewison: A Director’s Life is the book for you. In the Heat of the Night, A Soldier’s Story, The Hurricane) and crowd-pleasing hits (Fiddler on the Roof, Jesus Christ Superstar, Moonstruck) is ripe for reevaluation. Yes, the movies hold up, but the biggest big names and bigger budgets without losing sight of his vision. It’s about who has the juice, Steve McQueen told Jewison. Sometimes Jewison had the juice, and sometimes he didn’t. But when he did, nothing could stop him. Free from gossip and thoroughly researched, Norman Jewison: A Director’s Life is academia that reads like a novel. It’s great. • 303-848-3738 • 30


JULY 15, 2021