Wednesday 25 September 2013

Story by Robert McKee




Mckee has some strong views about films and he’s not going to let you learn about the nuts and bolts of story without beating you over the head with those views every chance he gets. European cinema? Load of rubbish, last 20 years of cinema? Load of rubbish, Hollywood & Asian cinema? The only people who can make “proper” films i.e. films that tell stories properly. The nuts and bolts are there and I didn’t pearl rule it but lost interest a little less than half way through. The examples he uses are mostly films I’ve not seen (Obviously I’ve been watching the rubbish films instead) and the style is both dry and overwrought. In the end this book goes onto the discard pile.


Overall – The style is not for me but there are useful things to glean


  1. McKee is interesting in that he apparently has virtually no credits whatsoever for his claim to be a teacher. I first came across his book years ago, and like you I struggled. I recently read Joe Eszterhas' The Devil's Guide to Hollywood', and he mentioned this (he has nothing good to say about McKee), so I checked the back of my copy - and to my astonishment there is nothing there.

    Devil's Guide is great, a rollercoaster book filled with madness, poison and vitriol - and some really good advice. It's buried deep and thinly spread, but it's there.

  2. Thanks - I'll keep my eye out for that one then!


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