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The Whole Equation: A History of Hollywood by David Thomson
In The Whole Equation, top film critic David Thomson attempts to tell the history of Hollywood and how it has influenced America and the world. He focuses on two aspects to illustrate his points about Hollywood: the people who made the movies famous and the trail of money that funded it all. He covers D. W. Griffith, Charlie Chaplin, Louis B. Mayer, David O. Selznick, Francis Ford Coppola, George Lucas, Bette Davis, Nicole Kidman, and many others. He also understands that while movies are entertainment, the movie business is about money and how the source of funds and the quest for profits has affected how movies, and Hollywood, were made. The Whole Equation is an attempt to look at the big picture that has shaped Hollywood and the moviemaking business and has received mostly positive reviews with some reservations for a focus that may too broad. The New York Observer says, "I avidly consumed most of The Whole Equation by flashlight, because Hurricane Jeanne had obliterated electricity and was doing its damnedest to obliterate Florida. I wasn't reading it because I had to, but because this intensely alive writer always compels rapt attention - even if there's a storm knocking down trees and ripping off roofs, even if you think he's wrong."
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