Thursday, June 08, 2017

The DTs

Critic David Thomson is nothing if not prolific. He seems to have a new book out on movies every year.

I recently read his 2015 work Why Acting Matters, and it made me think he should take a little more time. Thomson's contribution to the "Why X Matters" series is under 200 (short) pages, but mostly feels like filler.

The book is his maunderings on acting, high on speculation and low on facts or deep analysis.  He spends a lot of time discussing the personalities and performances of Laurence Olivier and Marlon Brando--perhaps the two greatest actors of the 20th century--but by the end, we don't feel we've learned much.

The book is interesting here and there, discussing the effect of film and The Method on modern acting, but what he has to say of interest could have been said in a Film Comment article.

There are already a fair number of books on acting, but there's always room for another--if the author has something to say.

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