Books by David Thomson

WARNER BROS by David Thomson
Released: Aug. 8, 2017

"An entertaining, well-documented history of the legendary studio for film scholars and fans alike."
The colorful history of the renowned Warner Bros. film studio and the brothers who founded it in the early 1920s. Read full book review >
TELEVISION by David Thomson
Released: Oct. 25, 2016

"A bracing, essential engagement with the ramifications of our lives before the small screen."
The article in the subtitle of this book is telling. The eminent film writer offers not a definitive or comprehensive history of TV but a personal celebration of his particular fascinations and a provocative consideration of the ways in which the very mechanics of the medium affect the audience, both as individuals and as a mass culture. Read full book review >
HOW TO WATCH A MOVIE by David Thomson
Released: Nov. 12, 2015

"An enjoyably deep dive into the interaction between cinema and psyche."
Celebrated movie critic and film studies teacher Thomson (Moments that Made the Movies, 2013, etc.) implores viewers to scrutinize themselves as closely as what's playing on the silver screen—or YouTube.Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 16, 2012

"A profound and richly satisfying reckoning with the movies and what they mean."
Thomson (The Moment of Psycho: How Alfred Hitchcock Taught America to Love Murder, 2009, etc.) brings his encyclopedic knowledge of film and idiosyncratic, allusive style to bear on this ambitious consideration of the history of motion pictures and their effect on the audience. Read full book review >
BETTE DAVIS by David Thomson
Released: Jan. 12, 2010

"Indispensable additions to any American film library."
The stars shine bright in this series of brief biographies of four of classic Hollywood's most enduring icons. Read full book review >
TRY TO TELL THE STORY by David Thomson
Released: Feb. 4, 2009

"Blends the techniques of film and fiction into a strong, evocative memoir."
Literate film buff Thomson (The Whole Equation: A History of Hollywood, 2004, etc.) recalls his early days. Read full book review >
Released: Dec. 10, 2004

"Disappointing, except for some flashes in selected short subjects. (Photos)"
A diffuse, uneven take on the American movie experience, rather surprising from the author of the cogent appraisals of US films and filmmakers in The New Biographical Dictionary of Film (2002). Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 2002

"Compelling, clear-eyed examination of Scott's actions and larger notions of what makes a hero."
Better known today for his books of film biography, history, and criticism (Rosebud, 1996, etc.), Thomson initially came to attention in his native Britain with this vivid 1977 analysis of the great race to the South Pole and the character of the men who led the efforts. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 8, 1999

"Not a book to please Nevada tourism officials, surely, but one that will engage anyone interested in the literature of the so-called New West."
An idiosyncratic road trip into the American outback. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 12, 1997

"But these are exceptions to the roil of self-indulgent, free-form folderol."
A poorly essayed collection of essays and flights of fancy on film and more. Read full book review >
ROSEBUD by David Thomson
Released: June 2, 1996

"A mulligan stew of a book that is best read as a complement to, rather than as a substitute for, other books on Welles. (69 photos) (First printing of 50,000)"
Eccentric biography of an even more eccentric genius. Read full book review >
SHOWMAN by David Thomson
Released: Nov. 9, 1992

"Pretty much a spellbinder, with a pathetic third act, despite Thomson's keen analyses of Selznick's glossy films and long fade- out. (Photographs—108—not seen.)"
Brilliant, immense life of the producer of Gone With the Wind, smartly done by film-historian/novelist Thomson (Silver Light, 1990, etc.). Read full book review >
VISUAL MAGIC by David Thomson
Released: Oct. 1, 1991

"A dandy introduction to the concept of perception. (Nonfiction. 9-12)"
An intriguing compilation of optical illusions: images that sort themselves out when studied or that can be read more than one way; op art; an Escher; pictures that gain a third dimension when viewed through the special glasses provided, etc. Several of these have appeared elsewhere, but it's instructive to have them together in this handy eight-inch square book—especially with Thomson's brief but lucid explanations of what is happening when the eye and mind try to decipher images that are designed to confuse them. Read full book review >