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by Thomas C. Renzi
McFarland, January 2006
371 pages
ISBN: 078642351X

Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

Aficionados of pulp and film noir will most certainly recognize the name of Cornell Woolrich. Well known in the 1930s and 1940s for his pulp fiction novels, his books went on to be the most adapted into film noir. Thomas C Renzi's book is an excellent reference book to the work of Cornell Woolrich through his novels and the adaptation of his work.

He has provided a detailed analysis of not only more than 20 of his novels and short stories but also the films that were adapted from the novels. This is also supplemented with a discussion of how his styles and themes influenced the noir genre. Renzi has not done things by halves as he has also included a biographical outline of Woolrich as well.

With the genre of noir and especially film noir constantly gathering new fans on a daily basis FROM PULP NOIR TO FILM NOIR provides a solid but also fascinating basis from which to start. However, this is not only useful for anyone interested in film noir but also anyone who wants to understand the way in which the whole concept of film noir arose in both books most specifically pulp books and films. It also highlights the major impact the Woolrich had on the the genre during his heyday and also in cinema history.

This is a book that will make you think of all those dark, broody and sexy characters that have come to epitomise all that is the best in noir film and fiction. FROM PULP NOIR TO FILM NOIR is a reference book that most certainly should be found on the bookshelf of any self-respecting fan of not only Cornell Woolrich but also film noir in general.

If you are looking for a book that will give you immense pleasure as you dip in and out of it then this is certainly one to consider. It also goes without saying that any film historian, academic or student of film should undoubtedly have this book amongst their collection as well. It will certainly enrich your knowledge about one of the most interesting authors and one of the most riveting aspects of film.

Reviewed by Ayo Onatade, December 2007

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Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)

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