Welcome to the theater! You’re just in time for the previews. I see that you’ve got your popcorn and drinks. I’ll show you to your seats.
New books celebrating the cinema are ready for circulation at Smiley Library. You’ll get to meet notable actors and directors, learn a bit about old Hollywood, and receive great DVD suggestions too. Hurry now, the lights are dimming and the curtain is just opening. Please sit back, relax and enjoy the show.
It’s hard to think of Alfred Hitchcock without picturing the infamous “shower scene” with Janet Leigh from the movie Psycho. If you’ve watched some of his classics, you’ll enjoy reading the history behind each masterpiece in “Alfred Hitchcock: The Complete Films.” This guide covers the early silent years to his final film in 1976. Brief background stories of his 53 movies along with accompanying stills give insight into one of the most prominent men in film. This would be a fun book to become acquainted with his prolific films, many of which may be brand new to you and some you may wish to add to your watch list.
Matthew McConaughey admirers will enjoy this next book. From his supporting role in Dazed and Confused to his Oscar-winning performance in Dallas Buyers Club, McConaughey has starred in numerous movies becoming a well-known celebrity. Now, with his first memoir “Greenlights” on the Los Angeles and New York Times bestseller lists, he’s proven to be just as popular as an author. Through a collection of candid personal stories, poems, and experiences drawn from a journal he has kept for the last 36 years, he shares insights explaining what it means to have “greenlights” in your life; affirmations you’re heading in the right direction. Full of stories from his childhood, world travels, career and family, he analyzes the moments that life gave him the go-ahead, and how to recognize and embrace that. An entertaining examination into a life as only Matthew could tell it.
Take a step back in years to old Hollywood with personalities like Rudolph Valentino, Olivia De Havilland, Clark Gable, and Mary Pickford. “This Was Hollywood: Forgotten Stars and Stories” by Carla Valderrama is the perfect overview of Hollywood during its Golden Age. Full of interesting history, trivia and a touch of scandal, even classic movie buffs will find a treasury of remarkable facts to learn here. Did you know Rita Hayworth was a “painfully shy” girl with long black hair dancing in a nightclub act with her father in Tijuana before becoming a Hollywood screen idol? Learn about the incredible talent of the Nicholas Brothers, dancing at the legendary Cotton Club. I’m sure you’ve heard of Rin Tin Tin, but how about Puzzums, “the most human cat in pictures?” This charming book has a wonderful “old school” vibe with abundant vintage photos and graphics.
Additional New Books Celebrating the Big Screen:
- “Apropos of Nothing” by Woody Allen
- “The Big Goodbye: Chinatown and the Last Years of Hollywood” by Sam Wasson
- “Chasing the Light: Writing, Directing, and Surviving Platoon, Midnight Express, Scarface, Salvador, and the Movie Game” by Oliver Stone
- “The Film Book: A Complete Guide to the World of Film” by Ronald Bergan
- “The Films of Martin Scorsese: Gangsters, Greed, and Guilt” by Eric San Juan Martin
- “Forbidden Hollywood: The Pre-Code Era (1930-1934): When Sin Ruled the Movies” by Mark A. Vieira
- “The Nolan Variations: The Movies, Mysteries, and Marvels of Christopher Nolan” by Tom Shone
- “Ripped from the Headlines!: The Shocking True Stories Behind the Movies’ Most Memorable Crimes” by Harold Schechter
Many films and works from the directors mentioned above are available for viewing from our extensive DVD collection. Familiar favorites like Psycho, Taxi Driver, Dallas Buyers Club, Batman Begins, Platoon, and Annie Hall as well as other classics, new releases, documentaries, musicals, adult and children’s titles are ready for you to check out, take home and enjoy.
In addition to our DVDs, you can stream classic, independent, foreign and educational films for free with a Smiley Library card through our Kanopy database. There are so many great films to watch here; I highly recommend taking a look.