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Movie-Star Portraits of the Forties [Paperback]

John Kobal
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 31.00
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Book Description

June 1 1977
The Hollywood of the Forties brings many images to mind. Do you remember the most famous pinup of them all? Betty Grable smiling at you all through World War II. The original sweater girl, Lana Turner. Rita Hayworth in all her glory. The stunning and statuesque Ava Gardner. A defiant, scantily clad Jane Russell standing near the hay. Bogart, Garfield, Kirk Douglas, Judy Garland. The brooding Robert Mitchum, the brute power of Burt Lancaster, the alienated Montgomery Clift, the animal menace of Marlon Brando. And perhaps the last of the studio pinups, the fragile and beautiful Marilyn Monroe. These flesh and blood fantasies, and many others, are here — 106 stars in 163 full-page glamour photos by 24 leading Hollywood photographers.
The pictures these photographic artists took span the period from the outbreak of World War II to the Korean conflict of 1951. As John Kobal writes in his informative introduction. "The Forties were the years of Old Hollywood's last stand, though the people concerned didn't know it." In a lively introduction, illustrated by ten pictures of the stars off the set, Mr. Kobal discusses the people and films of the Forties, the importance of these photos and the photographers who took them, and their magical appeal to movie fans. The captions give the year, photographer, studio, the movies that many of the portraits are associated with, and the costume designer. Originally printed in fan magazines, on posters, and in fashion spreads, these portraits are legendary. They are part of almost everyone's past, part of their dreams and fantasies.

Frequently Bought Together

Movie-Star Portraits of the Forties + Hollywood Glamor Portraits + Film-Star Portraits of the Fifties: 163 Glamor Photos
Price For All Three: CDN$ 44.33

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Mysterious Portraits, Pin-Ups, and Beefcake May 9 2001
By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
This book will delight anyone who is a fan of movies from the 1940s. It contains 163 photographs of 106 stars, taken by 34 photographers. The reproduction quality is quite good, and the compositions are often superb. The acting skills of the stars add to the allure of these images.
In the book's introduction, Mr. Kobal talks about how these were the "years of Old Hollywood's last stand." The images are "dreams reflected in the bathroom mirrors of their generation." He also talks about the role of the clothes designers and hairdressers in creating these glamorous, moody images.
Here are my favorites in the book:
By A.L. Schafer: Rita Hayworth, 1940; Olivia de Haviland, 1941; Loretta Young, 1940; Alan Ladd, 1942.
By Frank Powolny: Betty Grable, 1941; Marilyn Monroe, 1950.
By Robert Coburn: Gene Tierney, 1941.
By Scotty Welbourne: Ida Lupino, 1940; Humphrey Bogart, 1941; Lauren Bacall, 1946
By Clarence Sinclair Bell: Hedy Lamarr, 1941; Greta Garbo, 1941.
By William Walling: Fred MacMurray, 1940.
By Edward Cronenweth: Lena Horne, 1943.
By Ernest A. Bachrach: Dorothy McGuire, 1945; Claire Trevor, 1944; Jane Russell, 1946; Barbara Hale, 1946.
By Eric Carpenter: Ava Gardner, 1944.
By John Engstead: Lauren Bacall, 1951; Ingred Bergman, 1946; Marlon Brando, 1950.
By Laszlo Willinger: Susan Hayward, 1948.
By Bud Fraker: Gary Cooper, 1947.
As you can see, the book is dominated by the glamorous female stars. Most of these images are done in partial shadow to highlight the facial structure and emotions of the actress or actor. In some cases, sculptures are used to highlight certain physical features of the subject. In general, the reproduction quality is quite high.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A stunning collection! Dec 7 2001
Format:Paperback
This book features beautiful and captivating photographs of some of the biggest movie stars of the 1940's. The book's focus is primarily the 1940's, but there are several photographs from 1939 and a few from 1950. Some of the many stars include Hedy Lamarr, Rita Hayworth, Gene Tierney, Joan Crawford, Victor Mature, Alan Ladd, Gary Cooper, Lucille Ball, Merle Oberon, Lana Turner and many others. Each of the photographs exudes an air of elegance and dramatic artistry that is no longer seen today. This would make a great gift for fans of Hollywood's golden age as well as photographers and art lovers, but the photographs are so clear and the stars so alluring that anyone who looks at this book will surely fall under it's spell. Highly recommended! Also recommended is "Hollywood Glamor Portraits, 145 Photos of Stars 1926-1949" also by John Kobal (editor).
Was this review helpful to you?
5.0 out of 5 stars Esoteric and Haunting Beauty Captured May 15 2001
Format:Paperback
This collection of photographs of movie stars taken during the 1940's era is ever thought provoking. There seems a deliberate attempt to challenge the reader/viewer to discern the real life personality from the screen persona from the photographs chosen for this book. The result is a somewhat enigmatic experience leaving one with an euphoric feeling of melancholy. I think this is an important book for anyone who loves films from that era. The meticulous quality of this book allows you to stare into the eyes of these people stimulating your own imagination into your soul. It challenges you to find an answer to your own attraction to these immortal icons of a Hollywood long past and hopefully not forgotten.
Was this review helpful to you?
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Photographs of Movie Star Legends Oct. 2 1999
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This book of photography has over150 portraits of Hollywood legends including Loretta Young, Lauren Bacall, and Ava Gardner. These actors, actresses, and budding starlettes of the forties are as glamourous as they could be in these brilliant portraits. You don't have to like old movies to like this book. You will spend hours just flipping through the pages at the stars who built Hollywood movies.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  17 reviews
38 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A stunning collection! Dec 7 2001
By Robert Ortiz - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book features beautiful and captivating photographs of some of the biggest movie stars of the 1940's. The book's focus is primarily the 1940's, but there are several photographs from 1939 and a few from 1950. Some of the many stars include Hedy Lamarr, Rita Hayworth, Gene Tierney, Joan Crawford, Victor Mature, Alan Ladd, Gary Cooper, Lucille Ball, Merle Oberon, Lana Turner and many others. Each of the photographs exudes an air of elegance and dramatic artistry that is no longer seen today. This would make a great gift for fans of Hollywood's golden age as well as photographers and art lovers, but the photographs are so clear and the stars so alluring that anyone who looks at this book will surely fall under it's spell. Highly recommended! Also recommended is "Hollywood Glamor Portraits, 145 Photos of Stars 1926-1949" also by John Kobal (editor).
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Esoteric and Haunting Beauty Captured May 15 2001
By gobirds2 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This collection of photographs of movie stars taken during the 1940's era is ever thought provoking. There seems a deliberate attempt to challenge the reader/viewer to discern the real life personality from the screen persona from the photographs chosen for this book. The result is a somewhat enigmatic experience leaving one with an euphoric feeling of melancholy. I think this is an important book for anyone who loves films from that era. The meticulous quality of this book allows you to stare into the eyes of these people stimulating your own imagination into your soul. It challenges you to find an answer to your own attraction to these immortal icons of a Hollywood long past and hopefully not forgotten.
30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Photographs of Movie Star Legends Oct. 2 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book of photography has over150 portraits of Hollywood legends including Loretta Young, Lauren Bacall, and Ava Gardner. These actors, actresses, and budding starlettes of the forties are as glamourous as they could be in these brilliant portraits. You don't have to like old movies to like this book. You will spend hours just flipping through the pages at the stars who built Hollywood movies.
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mysterious Portraits, Pin-Ups, and Beefcake May 9 2001
By Donald Mitchell - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book will delight anyone who is a fan of movies from the 1940s. It contains 163 photographs of 106 stars, taken by 34 photographers. The reproduction quality is quite good, and the compositions are often superb. The acting skills of the stars add to the allure of these images.
In the book's introduction, Mr. Kobal talks about how these were the "years of Old Hollywood's last stand." The images are "dreams reflected in the bathroom mirrors of their generation." He also talks about the role of the clothes designers and hairdressers in creating these glamorous, moody images.
Here are my favorites in the book:
By A.L. Schafer: Rita Hayworth, 1940; Olivia de Haviland, 1941; Loretta Young, 1940; Alan Ladd, 1942.
By Frank Powolny: Betty Grable, 1941; Marilyn Monroe, 1950.
By Robert Coburn: Gene Tierney, 1941.
By Scotty Welbourne: Ida Lupino, 1940; Humphrey Bogart, 1941; Lauren Bacall, 1946
By Clarence Sinclair Bell: Hedy Lamarr, 1941; Greta Garbo, 1941.
By William Walling: Fred MacMurray, 1940.
By Edward Cronenweth: Lena Horne, 1943.
By Ernest A. Bachrach: Dorothy McGuire, 1945; Claire Trevor, 1944; Jane Russell, 1946; Barbara Hale, 1946.
By Eric Carpenter: Ava Gardner, 1944.
By John Engstead: Lauren Bacall, 1951; Ingred Bergman, 1946; Marlon Brando, 1950.
By Laszlo Willinger: Susan Hayward, 1948.
By Bud Fraker: Gary Cooper, 1947.
As you can see, the book is dominated by the glamorous female stars. Most of these images are done in partial shadow to highlight the facial structure and emotions of the actress or actor. In some cases, sculptures are used to highlight certain physical features of the subject. In general, the reproduction quality is quite high. Studios did now allow photographers to make their own prints in those days, so it all depended on the studio darkroom artists how it turned out. You will occasionally see an image that needed to have more cropping, more or less light, or which is muddy, but most are at least good reproductions.
After you finish this book, imagine how you can help people understand your thoughts by how you hold yourself and what expression you use. Do you see any poses or expressions here that can help you be more communicative?
Use all the elements of yourself to share your most important thoughts and emotions!
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Movie-Star Portraits of the Forties July 22 2006
By R. Hughey - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Beautiful pictures! They sure don't make stars like these anymore. Wonderful glamour shots, men & women. Bygone era but at least we have these gorgeous photos to remember or to discover.
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