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"You could say that Once Upon a Time in the West was the movie that made me consider film-making... but more, how to make an impact as a film-maker..." Quentin Tarantino Sergio Leone's film Once Upon a Time in the West set out to be the ultimate Western a celebration of the power of classic Hollywood cinema, a meditation on the making of America, and a lament for the decline of one of the most cherished film genres in the form of a "dance of death". With this film, Leone said a fond farewell to the noisy and flamboyant world of the Italian Western, which he had created with A Fistful of Dollars and sequels (1964-6), and aimed for something much more ambitious an exploration of the relationship between myth ('Once Upon a Time...'), history ('...in the West') and his own autobiography as an avid film-goer. With Once Upon a Time in the West, several of Leone's dreams came true: to work with Henry Fonda a hero of his youth in suburban Rome to make a star of Charles Bronson as he had of Clint Eastwood, to integrate musical score and visual image by recording the music in advance of filming, to re-boot some of the most hallowed moments of Hollywood Westerns, and to shoot among the buttes and mesas of Monument Valley, John Ford territory. This would be a horse opera in which the arias aren't sung, they are stared. Once Upon a Time has since inspired several generations of filmmakers worldwide. Its combination of 'film about film' with an angry historical epic, told with great style, has resonated for half a century, and its reputation has steadily grown. This book, by the world-renowned authority on Sergio Leone Christopher Frayling, includes revealing personal interviews with all the key players involved in Once Upon a Time in the West in front of the camera and behind it a wealth of never-before-published documents, designs and photographs, and the latest research into the making of a masterpiece, shot by shot. It is introduced with a foreword by Quentin Tarantino. This year is the 50th anniversary of Once Upon a Time in the West and this richly illustrated book is a suitably spectacular birthday tribute. AUTHOR: Christopher Frayling (born 1946) is Rector of the Royal College of Art in London. In addition, he is the longestserving Trustee of the V&A, and Chairman of the Royal Mint Advisory Committee, which selects the designs for new coins. Frayling is well-known as an historian, critic and an award-winning broadcaster. He has published 17 books and numerous articles on contemporary art, design, film and the history of ideas, most recently Frankenstein: The First Two Hundred Years. 350 colour and b/w photographs

 

Details

ISBN: 9781909526334
Audience: General
Format: Hardback
Number of Pages: 336
Publication Date: 18 Apr 2019
Publisher: Reel Art Press
Publication City, Country: London, United Kingdom
Dimensions (cm): 29.6(H) x 25.2(L)

 

Reviews

"Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece" [...] will tell you just about everything you want to know about the Italian director Sergio Leone's classic spaghetti western.--Kenneth Dickerman "Washington Post"
A beautiful, handsome tome as beautiful in pictures as it is in prose.--Jason Solomons "BBC Radio London"
A massive and gorgeous book about Sergio Leone's landmark Spaghetti Western.--Matthew Sweet "BBC Radio 3 'Free Thinking'"
A widescreen book for a widescreen classic, Frayling collates a staggering amount of material.--Matt Glasby "Total Film"
Behind the scenes of the greatest Western ever made.--Editorial "The Telegraph"
For a film that turned 50 this year, its hard to imagine a better birthday gift than this superb book...it all adds up to a remarkably thorough exploration of both the production and the man who masterminded it...This is the definitive account of the making and legacy of Leone's epic. Highly recommended.--Anton Van Beek "Home Cinema Choice"
Frayling is unquestionably the world's leading authority on the definitive director of Spaghetti Westerns, and its hardly cause for argument to say the book turns out like an absolute treat - and, yes, definitive...Frayling's text is both authoritative and accessible, with no stone unturned...--Barry Forshaw "DVD Choice"
Frayling, the world's leading Leone expert, has amassed photographs, posters, production sketches and more, and Leone fan Quentin Tarantino has written the introduction to this impressive volume.--Kenneth Turan "Los Angeles Times"
Frayling's own masterpiece... a book for the ages about making a movie for the ages. This is the coffe table book you will actually want to pick up and read.--Rhett Fisher "Trebuchet Magazine"
The movies may not be getting bigger than ever, but the books on them most definitely are, starting with Christopher Frayling's pleasantly massive "Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece."--Kenneth Turan "Los Angeles Times"
This sumptuously produced book is both a fine tribute to Sergio Leone's 1968 masterpiece and an insightful look at how a piece of cinema can gather an almost mythic reputation in the half-century since it was produced...[The text is] scrupulously researched and consistently surprising.--Alexander Larman "The Observer"

 

Author Biography

Christopher Frayling (born 1946) was rector of the Royal College of Art in London. In addition, he is the longest-serving trustee of the V&A, and chairman of the Royal Mint Advisory Committee, which selects the designs for new coins. Frayling is well known as a historian, critic and a award-winning broadcaster. He has published 17 books and numerous articles on contemporary art, design, film and the history of ideas, most recently Frankenstein: The First Two Hundred Years.

Once Upon A Time In The West: Shooting a Masterpiece
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