The title refers to the top movie directors of the pre-war era and their service during World War II. Incredibly interesting background stories about Frank Capra, William Wyler, If you enjoy John Ford, George Stevens and John Huston. if you enjoy the films by these great directors this book is a must read.
This is an admirable chronicle of the WW2 activities of five of the most famed Hollywood directors.
The issues of the value (and perils) of propaganda and the use of reenactment in documentary films are as timely today as during WW2. Harris expertly puts these five men's military experiences in context of the wider war, Hollywood history, and their careers and films. I learned quite a lot about men whose biographies and movies I thought I knew well.
"In his previous book, Pictures at a Revolution, author Mark Harris wrote about the 1967 nominees for Best Picture and how they reflected a changing culture. Here, he explores the stories of five big-name directors who joined the war effort in the 1940s; one documented the flights of the Memphis Belle, while another captured the liberations of Paris and Dachau. In discussing how their work in the armed services affected them personally and professionally, Harris also addresses the division in Hollywood between those who supported the U.S. joining the war and those who didn't." Popular Culture May 2014 newsletter http://www.libraryaware.com/996/NewsletterIssues/ViewIssue/217e1482-9d78-4d54-9cc6-2b3270c2d832?postId=ca9ebdd2-adec-483c-8400-6611a8e1b44a
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