Monday, September 28, 2009

Sound and Music in Film Art: An Introduction

Although they tend to downplay their contribution to film sound research and pedagogy, David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson's chapter on sound in their best-selling Film Art: An Introduction is excellent. As with all the chapters in the book, Chapter 9 is clearly organized, with a wealth of brief comments on individual films, plus a few longer analyses. Their approach to the topic is very compatible with HtM, and the chapter or its analytic essays could easily serve as additional reading in a course for which HtM is the principal textbook.

In the Supporting Materials section, I have added a Word file that gives a detailed table of contents for Chapter 9 in the 7th edition (the current edition is the 8th (2006)), along with a list of all the films mentioned in the chapter, keyed to topics.

Link to Film Art on Bordwell's website: David Bordwell. And to the publisher: Film Art, 8th edition (this link goes to a table of contents). quotes a few definitions of terms from the FIlm Art sound chapter: definitions. The sound chapter from the first edition of Film Art (1979) was reprinted (without images) under the section "Practice and Methodology" in the anthology Film Sound: Theory and Practice, ed. Elisabeth Weis and John Belton (1985). This venerable anthology is still in print (Columbia University Press).