Recently by Tim Gebhart

Book Review: Superman: The Golden Age Newspaper Dailies: 1942-1944

New Library of American Comics collection of World War II era daily newspaper Superman comic strips shows why the the superhero stayed on the home front instead of the battlefield.
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Imagine the conundrum. America recently entered World War II, a war the government pronounces a battle between the “free world” and a “slave world.” Less than four years before, the first page of the first story about the now nationally popular Superman called him the “champion of the oppressed.” He’s since displayed not only invulnerability but superpowers that could make quick work of the Axis. How can Superman morally allow the war to continue? The problem facing Superman’s creators, writers, and artists wasn’t just an internal one. TIME magazine wrote about “Superman’s Dilemma” in its April 13, 1942, issue. It

Book Review: The Art of Selling Movies by John McElwee

Entertaining visual look at the history of American movie newspaper ads suffers from issues with accompanying text
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Today’s digital media dislodged or diminished a variety of other media. Some are conspicuous: VHS and VCR. Others, such as the shriveling of newspaper movie ads, less so. From its inception, newspaper advertising was a principal means of promoting movies. In addition to where and when a film was showing, these ads brought artwork, photos, and lively descriptions to the consumer. In The Art of Selling Movies, John McElwee looks at the history and evolution of this craft. As McElwee points out, his book isn't about movies but the countless, nameless ad creators and their “skill, sometimes genius of pulling

Book Review: Fireball: Carole Lombard and the Mystery of Flight 3 by Robert Matzen

Using numerous interviews, a personal climb to the crash site, and government documents, Matzen constructs the story deliberately.
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Like the rest of America, World War II transformed Hollywood. Within 10 days of Pearl Harbor, President Franklin Roosevelt appointed a "coordinator of government films" as a liaison between the government and the motion picture industry and to advise Hollywood in supporting the war effort. And just 40 days after Pearl Harbor, the first Hollywood star would die in pursuit of the latter. Known for her beauty and her roles in popular screwball comedies, Carole Lombard became one of the highest paid actresses during the 1930s. She appeared in more than 30 films that decade. In 1999, the American Film

Book Review: The Boomer's Guide to Story: A Search for Insight in Literature and Film by Roemer McPhee

Looking for insight into the Baby Boomers through the literature and film that influenced it and it produced.
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Full disclosure first. I tend to watch a film almost solely for enjoyment. I don't usually concern myself with a movie's structure or ponder how many metaphorical elements it may have. In fact, I remain befuddled by the high regard for Citizen Kane. I am, though, a Baby Boomer, falling about in the center of the commonly used 1946-1964 birth range used to define the boomers. Fortunately, the first isn't a disqualification and the second is of value when it comes to reading The Boomer's Guide to Story: A Search of Insight in Literature and Film. Although the title refers

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