This third edition of Gifford's catalog of British film expands on the voluminous material of the previous versions. In addition to documenting British feature films and shorts produced from 1986 to 1994, the late Gifford also revised and expanded existing entries and added more titles for 1888-1985. A cartoonist, screenwriter, and prolific writer on comic strips, old-time radio, and film history, Gifford includes a bibliography of the trade papers, fan magazines, catalogs, and directories he used as resources and acknowledges over 50 pioneer moviemakers he interviewed to glean more about the British film industry. In both volumes, the films are arranged chronologically by year and then by month of exhibition date. Entries provide such information as the length, the censor's rating, whether the film was silent or sound, the color system, production and distribution companies, the crew and cast with character names, the genre, a brief synopsis, awards, and cinematic innovations. Each volume contains its own title index, including alternative titles and serial episode titles. The impressive scope and excellent production value of these volumes far outweigh their limitations. One may quibble that the volumes would be better subtitled "Entertainment Film" and "Factual Film," since films about musicians and other performance artists are included under "Fiction Film." In addition, the "Non-Fiction Film" volume, predominantly newsreels and travelogs, does not have the research value of the "Fiction Film" volume. Finally, it is regrettable that animated films are not included here, but Gifford covered those in another book, British Animated Films, 1896-1985 (McFarland, 1987. o.p.). Recommended for large academic libraries. Vivian Reed, California State Univ., Long Beach Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
This is the new edition of a catalogue in two volumes that lists every fiction and non-fiction British film produced for public entertainment from 1895 to 1994. It includes every traceable professionally produced and completed film, whether or not exhibited; it excludes films made specifically for and shown only on television, as well as films of fact (newsreels, documentaries, education, etc.). The approximately 15,000 titles are arranged chronologically in order of exhibition. Information includes year/month, title, length, censor's certificate, silent or sound, color system, reissue, production and distribution companies, credits, producer and director, story source, screenplay, cast and characters, genre, awards, series and serials, photographic gauge, narrator, and dating from 1971 the editor, music, musical director, voices, and photographer. The plot or content of each film is summarized in a single sentence. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)