A bold, convincing call for new voices and perspectives in cinema.

THE WRONG KIND OF WOMEN

INSIDE OUR REVOLUTION TO DISMANTLE THE GODS OF HOLLYWOOD

An investigation of how the male-dominated film industry silences women’s stories.

Drawing on more than 100 hours of interviews and abundant studies and news articles, actress, writer, and producer Jones makes her book debut with a spirited critique of the film industry’s treatment of women at all levels. “I have lived and experienced the harassment, the casual dismissals, the closed doors, the patronizing head-pats, the blatant sexism, the indifference toward women in film for over a decade,” she writes, mounting compelling evidence that her experiences are widespread—and persist even after #MeToo, #OscarsSoWhite, and the Harvey Weinstein scandal. Fresh out of drama school, Jones knew she would have to spend a few years “furiously battling to get auditions” and working for little or no money in order to build a resume. She soon discovered that along with competition and disappointment, “sexual harassment, assault, and degradation make up the constant, thrumming, crushing backdrop of being an actress.” With men predominant as casting directors, agents, directors, and producers, she found that when trying out for a part, she was “being held up against a set of stereotypes of the type of women who are allowed to appear in films and on television” and “make sense to the creators and gatekeepers.” Frustrated as an actress, she faced gender discrimination, as well, as a film producer. Female film school graduates, argues the author, “have a far harder time than their male peers acquiring even the lowest-level entry jobs in the industry,” meaning less access to financial support and networking. Women behind the camera, moreover, have “to fight to command the respect from typically majority-male crews.” Sexism directly affects film’s cultural impact: Since 95% of movies have been directed by white men, the images they perpetuate “have shaped everybody’s cinematic visual language,” turning women into the objects of male protagonists’ “actions, desires, and gaze[s].” Jones offers concrete suggestions for change within and outside of the industry, including by filmgoers who should “vote with your dollars.”

A bold, convincing call for new voices and perspectives in cinema.

Pub Date: Feb. 4, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-80-703345-6

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Beacon Press

Review Posted Online: Oct. 8, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2019

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

THE 48 LAWS OF POWER

The authors have created a sort of anti-Book of Virtues in this encyclopedic compendium of the ways and means of power.

Everyone wants power and everyone is in a constant duplicitous game to gain more power at the expense of others, according to Greene, a screenwriter and former editor at Esquire (Elffers, a book packager, designed the volume, with its attractive marginalia). We live today as courtiers once did in royal courts: we must appear civil while attempting to crush all those around us. This power game can be played well or poorly, and in these 48 laws culled from the history and wisdom of the world’s greatest power players are the rules that must be followed to win. These laws boil down to being as ruthless, selfish, manipulative, and deceitful as possible. Each law, however, gets its own chapter: “Conceal Your Intentions,” “Always Say Less Than Necessary,” “Pose as a Friend, Work as a Spy,” and so on. Each chapter is conveniently broken down into sections on what happened to those who transgressed or observed the particular law, the key elements in this law, and ways to defensively reverse this law when it’s used against you. Quotations in the margins amplify the lesson being taught. While compelling in the way an auto accident might be, the book is simply nonsense. Rules often contradict each other. We are told, for instance, to “be conspicuous at all cost,” then told to “behave like others.” More seriously, Greene never really defines “power,” and he merely asserts, rather than offers evidence for, the Hobbesian world of all against all in which he insists we live. The world may be like this at times, but often it isn’t. To ask why this is so would be a far more useful project.

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-670-88146-5

Page Count: 430

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1998

Did you like this book?

A wonderful page-turner written with humility, immediacy, and great style. Nothing came cheap and easy to McCandless, nor...

INTO THE WILD

The excruciating story of a young man on a quest for knowledge and experience, a search that eventually cooked his goose, told with the flair of a seasoned investigative reporter by Outside magazine contributing editor Krakauer (Eiger Dreams, 1990). 

Chris McCandless loved the road, the unadorned life, the Tolstoyan call to asceticism. After graduating college, he took off on another of his long destinationless journeys, this time cutting all contact with his family and changing his name to Alex Supertramp. He was a gent of strong opinions, and he shared them with those he met: "You must lose your inclination for monotonous security and adopt a helter-skelter style of life''; "be nomadic.'' Ultimately, in 1992, his terms got him into mortal trouble when he ran up against something—the Alaskan wild—that didn't give a hoot about Supertramp's worldview; his decomposed corpse was found 16 weeks after he entered the bush. Many people felt McCandless was just a hubris-laden jerk with a death wish (he had discarded his map before going into the wild and brought no food but a bag of rice). Krakauer thought not. Admitting an interest that bordered on obsession, he dug deep into McCandless's life. He found a willful, reckless, moody boyhood; an ugly little secret that sundered the relationship between father and son; a moral absolutism that agitated the young man's soul and drove him to extremes; but he was no more a nutcase than other pilgrims. Writing in supple, electric prose, Krakauer tries to make sense of McCandless (while scrupulously avoiding off-the-rack psychoanalysis): his risky behavior and the rites associated with it, his asceticism, his love of wide open spaces, the flights of his soul.

A wonderful page-turner written with humility, immediacy, and great style. Nothing came cheap and easy to McCandless, nor will it to readers of Krakauer's narrative. (4 maps) (First printing of 35,000; author tour)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 1996

ISBN: 0-679-42850-X

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Villard

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 1995

Did you like this book?

more