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"Brunetta is without doubt Italy's foremost historian of Italian cinema, and this outstanding synthesis of his three decades of research on the subject belongs on every bookshelf devoted to film in general and Italian cinema in particular. It represents not only a brilliant overview but also a comprehensive reference guide to the entire history of Italian film from the silent era to the present."--Peter Bondanella, author of The Cinema of Federico Fellini
"This is a brilliant work, eclectic and engaging at every page. With the aim of providing a comprehensive history of Italian film, carefully envisioned from its origins to the present day, Brunetta approaches cinema in its broadest sense, analyzing the influence of all the elements and figures integral to the collaborative venture of filmmaking. He offers a strikingly original discussion of Italian cinema."--Gaetana Marrone, author of The Gaze and the Labyrinth
"Brunetta transcends film-studies fads to restore the heft of traditional historiography. In a clear, sinuous narrative he details the development of Italian cinema as art and as industry, within its own cultural and political context and in the world."--M. Yacowar, Choice
"If you are a serious film buff, then this book is a godsend, covering all you need to know in great detail. It packs in such a great amount of information that it's pretty much a one-stop shop for getting to grips with Italy's cinematic past, present and future."--Italia
"Gian Piero Burnetta believes that Italian cinema is not simply one of the great movie industries but 'the Art Form of the 20th Century'--and he certainly makes a good fist of proving this bold proposition in his comprehensive new history."--West Australian
"Those approaching his work for the first time will gain confidence in the depth and scope of his knowledge of Italian cinema and culture."--Marcia Landy, European Legacy
As Brunetta (history & criticism of cinema, Univ. of Padua; The Cinema of Italy) guides readers through the halls of Italian cinema-overlooked by busts of Bernardo Bertolucci, Vittorio De Sica, Roberto Rossellini, and Federico Fellini and through displays of neorealism, Morricone-twanged spaghetti Westerns, giallo("thriller") splatter scenes, Nuovo cinema Paradiso, and Roberto Benigni antics-one might be upended by where the tour leads. In contrast to the epic grandeur of its tradition, the current state seems directionless and frail, but this is less a national crisis than an international reality. While some find concern with a lack of collective focus or see an undefined or unfamiliar cinematic landscape, Brunetta retains faith in film as a communicative method. This thoroughly detailed and seemingly experiential guide through the annals of Italian cinema conveys a lot of information but never seems less than easily gaited and conversational. Rare for a title of its scope, this is an absorbing, passionately told narrative. Recommended for all libraries for its reference value.