This paper is a review of the book The Filmmaker’s Handbook, which is extremely essential in translating and guiding filmmakers. This book has more than 600 pages, all compressed into 18 chapters and around 9 useful appendices in which the author virtually puts each and every detail an individual needs to know about filmmaking. The book probably has more information than anyone might need, ranging from which lens should be used all through to the final film sound mixing and editing. However, it is clear from the book that too much information does not hurt, because it is these kinds of books that a blossoming and growing filmmaker can find useful.
Most of the book puts more emphasis on the hardware and the gear, and rightly so mainly because filmmaking or making of videos is both influenced by and dependent on the gear and tools that the filmmaker uses. This book, therefore, finds it useful to describe the distinctions between the lenses, the tools- film stock, setup lighting and the influence of each of these on the look of the final product.
For teachers, students, as well as, the novice and professional film and video makers, this comprehensive and clear handbook remains the most reliable reference and guide to numerous aspects of filmmaking, some of the techniques that the author highlight in this essential book include such things as techniques for making documentary, narrative, feature film, as well as, experimental films. This book also acts as a guide to individuals mentioned above on ways of working with standard- definition and high- definition digital video formats like HDV, DV and HD. In addition to all these, the book is also extremely useful in guiding teachers, students and filmmakers on how to carry out extensive coverage of editing video with the most current nonlinear systems and tools for editing. Another indispensable feature the book brings to the attention of these parties has to do with the business aspects of producing and making films like financing and managing financial aspects of the movie making process.
This book was extremely beneficial to me, as a filmmaking student and as an aspirant to become a maker of films or movies in the future. I love films and movies, and I did not actually have much ideas and knowledge on what is involved in making films and movies, but this book proved to be an excellent and extremely beneficial guide. I found out that this book is even more essential and indispensable for these people like me, who want to become future filmmakers, and those aspiring to be involved in the business.
I use the word business here because the book is not truly a guide to the filmmaking art, but also a guide of how to manage in the business of making films and selling them. It is so critical because of its practicality and its portrayal of the day-to-day activities in filmmaking and the business of making films. I found out that the book is a thorough and excellent guide and introduction to the people, processes, arrangement, details used in making of films, especially when it comes to independent films, in addition to the contracts involved, in the business of filmmaking. As one can imagine, such details are of extreme value to a filmmaking student, like me, who dreams of becoming a successful filmmaker in the future. This is because the book does not leave out any essential detail in helping individuals like me become familiar and knowledgeable to the business.
Ascher, Steven and Pincus, Edward. The Filmmaker’s Handbook. A Comprehensive Guide for the Digital Age. New York: New American Library, 2008. Print.
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