"For his encyclopedic book Hollywood on Lake Michigan: 100 years of Chicago and the Movies (1998), Arnie Bernstein tracked down almost 700 films made in Chicago. His new book is an excavation of another sort..." [Read full review]
—Bill Stamets, Chicago Reader, "In Print: at the movies with Carl Sandburg," October 19, 2001
"The Movies Are puts into words the experience I've been trying to recapture for my audiences at the LaSalle Theatre Revival House. Editor Arnie Bernstein has put together a collection of passionate reviews by Carl Sandburg that truly verbalize the beauty of the silent cinema..." [Read full review]
—Matthew C. Hoffman, Director, LaSalle Theatre, July 17, 2001
"It's easier to associate the poet Carl Sandburg with 'city of the big shoulders, hog butcher to the world' than to the movies, which were in their infancy when Sandburg was the Roger Ebert of his day..." [Read full review]
—Carl Kozlowski, The Chicago Production Weekly, Screen, "Sandburg the critic: Book based on the poet's years as a film critic," February 12, 2001
"There is a gem of a book called 'The Movies Are,' written and edited with historical commentary by Beverly resident Arnie Bernstein that provides insights into a little known aspect of the literary career of Carl Sandburg..." [Read full review]
—Kathleen Tobin, The Beverly Review, "Beverly author uncovers Sandburg's silver screen gems," January 21, 2001
"At the dawn of cinematic history, the so called cultivated person held movies in contempt. Carl Sandburg understood early on, however, the film was here to stay..." [Read full review]
—Milton Heap, Gadfly, January/February 2001
"Cinema students and die hard film buffs will be most attracted to this, Bernstein's comprehensive examination of the silent film era, a time when filmmaking technology was evolving at nearly the same creatively manic pace as it is today.
"Bernstein anchors this excellent presentation with film reviews penned by pre-eminent Pulitzer Prize winning poet and Abraham Lincoln biographer Sandburg, and it is through Sandburg's keen gaze that we not only enjoy a great big of some very glib film criticism, but are treated as well to a glimpse into the earliest days of color and three dimensional photography, sound, and yes, to the all important art of pie throwing as well.
"Too, Sandburg ruminates on censorship, silent movie music, foreign films—and perhaps one of the day's most innovative ideas, "films for the blind." Interviews with Charlie Chaplin, Will Rogers and Groucho Marx are just a sample of some of the other tasty treats within, which Bernstein cleverly interplays with Sandburg's accessible reviews, artful in their informative simplicity.
"Highest kudos to Bernstein himself, though: the research involved in bringing this gem to life, coupled with his outstanding historical commentary—had to be exhaustive—and is hereby enormously appreciated."
—The boox reviews: Adult nonfiction, Review of "The Movies Are," November 15, 2000
"You will see that this little clicking contraption with he revolving handle will make a revolution in our life —in the life of writers. It is a direct attack on the old methods of literary art. We will have to adapt ourselves to the shadowy screen and the cold machine..." [Read full review]
—Philip K. Martin, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, "On Film: Poet Knew Movies Shape Thinking," November 10, 2000
In this collection, assembled by Chicago writer Arnie Bernstein, Sandburg shows a willingness to keep an open mind when discussing the merits of what could be considered a nonstop parade of motion picture pap product. He discusses and judges a program-filling educational short film with the same respect as an acknowledged feature film classic. His balanced judgment imparts a feeling of trust in his pronouncements and gives the reader a historical perspective on the motion picture industry of the 1920s that transcends the disposable medium of the daily newspaper. Sandburg's judgments of the 1920s are in sync with our late twentieth-century historical perspective on these films. There is not a sign of the smug isolationism of academia, nor of the sycophantic film criticism hack, whose undiscerning judgment is always colored by studio publicity. . . .We recommend this book to both Sandburg and silent film enthusiasts."
—Silent Era: The silent film website, "Review of 'The Movies Are' "
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