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Despite The System: Orson Welles Versus The Hollywood Studios (Cappella Books) (英語) ハードカバー – 2005/2/28


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  • ハードカバー: 402ページ
  • 出版社: Chicago Review Pr; New版 (2005/2/28)
  • 言語: 英語
  • ISBN-10: 1556525478
  • ISBN-13: 978-1556525476
  • 発売日: 2005/2/28
  • 商品パッケージの寸法: 15.2 x 3.6 x 22.9 cm
  • おすすめ度: この商品の最初のレビューを書き込んでください。
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Amazon.com: 5つ星のうち 3.8 9 件のカスタマーレビュー
5つ星のうち 4.0 Quirky book with a definite point of view 2014/1/31
投稿者 John C. Mucci - (Amazon.com)
Amazonで購入
Heylin does not suffer fools. At times he may be one, but he does not suffer it in anyone else. He has done some primary research in the endless, bottomless well of Orsoniana, and gives us what he feels is a definitive report on some of the myths that embroider or plague the Welles story. His seething dislike of Simon Cowell's (as of now) two-volume biography is truly unprofessional; while much of this book is a welcome sight, when Heylin digs into a fellow biographer that he does not like, we are treated to what seems to be a bi-polar style that is most unattractive. In any case, most of the research and most of the book deals with Citizen Kane and the Magnificent Ambersons; less and less is written about the later films, perhaps because there is less controversy about them, or there simply isn't much to research. Anyone who has read about Welles extensively will see that he knows his subject, is passionate about the topic, and does not stint at taking a viewpoint, all of which makes this a lively and informative book.
5つ星のうち 5.0 A gift for my husband 2013/3/20
投稿者 Pamela U. Moore - (Amazon.com)
形式: ペーパーバック Amazonで購入
My husband had this on his Wish List on Amazon, so I got it for him at Christmas; it was from a seller on Amazon, and arrived in better condition than described. He has enjoyed reading it.
7 人中、7人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち 3.0 Readable, of course, but not all that was promised 2005/9/12
投稿者 Iconophoric - (Amazon.com)
形式: ハードカバー
This book is heavy on argumentation. Whatever newly researched material it provides (and whether it provides much at all is debatable) is wound up in the fiber of a polemic the likes of which we haven't seen since the glory days of the Andrew Sarris-Pauline Kael Wars. I wish there had been a little less nonchalant jab-shooting at those with whom the writer doesn't see eye-to-eye, and a little more substance that was new.

That said, I will concede that this book is, naturally, highly readable. But bear in mind, it would be hard to imagine a book about any aspect of a life like Welles' being anything but readable. Having read Leaming's friendly biography and the Bogdanovich interview book (This is Orson Welles), however, I have to say everything here feels more than merely familiar, like something I (as a reader of books on this topic) have known for years now.

It begins to look as if a resifting through the same plate of sand is all we are going to get from further books about Welles, barring some sort of major uncovering of tapes, films or personal papers. And that doesn't appear likely at this point.
23 人中、21人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち 4.0 Revisionist history of a great director 2005/2/22
投稿者 H. F. Gibbard - (Amazon.com)
形式: ハードカバー
Orson Welles is often cited as the classic example of an artist who peaked too early. His great work for the Mercury radio theater (including the infamous "War of the Worlds" radio broadcast) was followed by his 1941 film debut "Citizen Kane," consistently rated in polls as the greatest film of all time. After that, embarrassment...a long, slow decline until he became the pathetic figure in wine commercials before he died.

The usual explanation for this focusses on Welles' own character flaws. He was self-indulgent, this explanation says, irascible, unable to bring a film in on budget, constantly trying gimmicky scenarios that didn't have a chance of working or of garnering an audience. Welles supposedly left us a clue to his own personality in "Citizen Kane": the self-obsessed loser who finishes his days alone due to his own inability to relate to others.

Clinton Heylin thinks otherwise. He believes Welles could have accomplished a string of cinematic miracles, perhaps as great as "Kane," had the Hollywood studio system just given him the chance. Heylin has done his homework. He carefully reconstructs what happened to each of Welles' films within the studio system, beginning with "The Magnificent Ambersons" and continuing to "Touch of Evil." It is a fascinating look at what went wrong, and why.

The book has its faults. It is written with breathless prose at times, and you won't find much objectivity about Welles within its pages. Occasionally, the author seems so full of adulation for Welles that he refuses to see his faults. The book accepts Welles' own praise for his relatively untampered-with version of Kafka's "The Trial," for example, which I found (on a first viewing, at least) to be hilariously self-indulgent. (Anthony Perkins and Orson Welles turned out to be a very bad combination, in my opinion, though I know there are people who adore this film.)

Overall, this book makes a valuable contribution to understanding Welles and his struggles with the studio system during the years 1942 through 1958.
14 人中、14人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち 5.0 Welles's Battles, Sympathetically Portrayed 2005/6/14
投稿者 Rob Hardy - (Amazon.com)
形式: ハードカバー
When _Citizen Kane_ was released in 1941, it was hailed by critics as a marvel, a film that had accomplished by innovations in plot, theme, photography, and sound what no movie had done before. It was as thick with meaning and style as any play or novel; the enormous numbers of books and articles devoted to it since that time, and its continuous inclusion on any list of great films, confirm how important a work it is. Orson Welles, new to Hollywood, young, brash, and brilliant, had delivered a masterpiece in his very first try. He had made the system work in ways it never had before. He would bring further new and innovative works from Hollywood, it seemed certain. But Welles never again had the freedom that he was able to use on _Kane_, and only made five further movies within the Hollywood system. How did this happen? In _Despite the System: Orson Welles Versus the Hollywood Studios_ (Chicago Review Press), Clinton Heylin has given a useful and informed summary of the troubled give-and-take that resulted in the studios taking all his films except _Kane_ away from Welles at the vital editing stage. "I believe that the only good work I can do is my own particular thing," Welles once said, looking back and using the idiom of the sixties. "I don't think I'm very good at doing their thing."

Heylin comments extensively on other commentators on the Welles productions, because he has set out to redress what he sees as a misinformed analysis that has laid blame on the inner demons of Welles himself for his shocking failure to follow up _Kane_. For instance, Charles Higham wrote twenty-five years ago that Welles blamed others for wrecking his work, but that the real culprit was Welles's own fear of completion. This was, according to Heylin, "a neat little box in which to wrap any enigmas the work itself threw up." It was simple, and attracted many other commentators, and even cost Welles an investor for one of his later projects. However, Heylin shows that Welles was eager to get his films done, finishing them against the odds and against the shortsightedness of studio heads. Welles was not undone by his own inner failings, but "by real people, with real motives." In the stories about each of the six films here, Heylin shows that after _Kane_, Welles directed some fascinating films whose flaws are not due to his own inability to complete them, but to his inability to complete them in his fashion. _The Magnificent Ambersons_, _The Stranger_, _The Lady from Shanghai_, _Macbeth_, and finally _Touch of Evil_ are all covered here in fine detail, and their individual problems laid out.

One of the sound ideas that Heylin stresses is that not all the complaints the studios had against Welles ought to have been based on their financial worries. It is true that Welles didn't care much about making money, nor did he take pains to get the money men on his side in his endeavors. Welles could, when he wanted, work fast and inexpensively; _Kane_, for instance, was not a particularly expensive movie, and its glorious effects are all the more wonderful for being, on the whole, simple and cheap. Welles could film many pages of script in a single take, using combinations of shots that could compress ideas in an economic model any studio would embrace. He was certainly difficult to work with, self-indulgent and not only flouting Hollywood rules but disappearing from the studios at just the time when he should have been there to support his own versions of his films. Heylin takes the stance, however, that Welles was over and over again a victim, and _Despite the System_ marshals an impressive collection of facts (shooting scripts, rewrites, memos, and of course, other authors' books of interpretation) to support such a view. Against the system, Welles had considerable triumphs, but the subject here is his defeats, and they are told with sympathy; his admirers will read this book with a heartbreaking sense of loss.
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