Pictures (英語) ハードカバー – 2006/9/1
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“Jeff Bridges has constructed a rich, compelling, and highly personal chronicle of behind-the-scenes Hollywood.... This is a unique and important contribution to the photographic literature.”
This extraordinary book of images represents a lifetime of photographic practice by one of Hollywood’s most compelling actors. A four-time Academy Award nominee, Jeff Bridges has starred in many of the most beloved films of our time, including The Last Picture Show, The Fabulous Baker Boys, Starman, The Fisher King, Fearless, American Heart, The Big Lebowski, The Contender, and Seabiscuit, this summer’s upcoming blockbuster feature from Universal Pictures. Bridges has collaborated with some of the most respected directors in Hollywood, among them Peter Bogdanovich, the Coen Brothers, Terry Gilliam, Francis Ford Coppola, Ridley Scott, and Peter Weir, and has costarred with many of the silver screen’s most compelling actors: Kevin Spacey, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Tobey Maguire, Tommy Lee Jones, Robin Williams, Nick Nolte, John Turturro, Gary Oldman, Tim Robbins, Michelle Pfeiffer, Lauren Bacall, Joan Allen, Amanda Plummer, Isabella Rossellini, Ellen Barkin, Barbra Streisand, Jessica Lange, Penelope Cruz, and Jane Fonda, to name but a few.
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With an often witty introduction by none other than director, writer, producer, critic and film historian, Peter Bogdanovich, we gain a rare insight through black & white on-set images shot by Jeff Bridges. It should be remembered that Bogdanovich's most critically acclaimed film is The Last Picture Show (1971), nominated for eight Academy Awards, including Jeff Bridges for Best Supporting Actor, and it was Bridges' first major role.
The photos that we find between the covers were mostly taken by Bridges himself, and they offer a unique perspective for both fans of his films and they range from serious to very witty. There are almost 120 images from the set of The Big Lebowski, Tron, Starman, The Fabulous Baker Boys, and more, along with some excellent photos of his brother Beau and father Lloyd.
For this photo enthusiast, it is interesting to note that these were taken with a 35mm Widelux camera, a device that is a real throwback to the 1950s. Jeff Bridges received his first Widelux as a gift from his wife, and readers will find in this book. It's a panning, still camera and has a 28mm lens that pans almost 180º, and instead of the traditional shutter, it has a slit that exposes the film as the lens pans. But that's all in the book, along with some very off-the-wall commentary by Bridges himself.
Pictures by Jeff Bridges is a wonderful and witty look at film the way that few ever see, a warm and highly recommended work of images by a man who before he was a known actor, was also a photographer.
I'm a bit of a sucker for photography books, especially ones with black and white photos, and needless to say, I've bought more than my fair share. Some I have regretted buying, having only looked at them once or twice. Pictures by Jeff Bridges is one of the few books I don't regret spending money on. In fact, my purchase was totally guilt-free because Jeff Bridges is donating all the proceeds to a non profit organization.
But maybe I like this book so much because I am a photographer myself and have worked in feature film production. In fact, one of the companies I have worked for did the special effects for Starman.
That aside, Jeff Bridges offers a unique window of opportunity to gain a glimpse of what it's like on movie sets, from the point of view of one of the members of the cast. Stars like Penelope Cruz, Michelle Pfieffer and Gary Busey are featured. Although members of the production crew are also featured, I wish they would be featured even more (as a member of 'the crew' myself, I often feel like our contributions are overshadowed by the celebrities).
Jeff Bridges' special perspective is not only represented in the subject matter of the photos, but also in the panoramic format. There is something cinematic about these wide shots and the format suits the subject matter of moviemaking wonderfully. Further, Bridges has some stories and hand written notes throughout the book, a very nice touch, entertaining and appreciated.
The book is nearly 200 pages, seems sturdy and is put together quite well. Whether you are a fan of Jeff Bridges, filmmaking, black and white, panoramic photography, or all of the above, this is a comprehensive book you won't regret buying. Heck, I've bought photo books that cost way more yet only include a handful of photos. Pictures by Jeff Bridges is definitely a book in which you get your money's worth.
It is a joy to have this book.
In addition to the pictures, which are VERY nice by the way, the book has many behind the scenes stories, and gives you a great opportunity to know the artist (and the man). Awesome book.