Lights! Camera! Alice!: The Thrilling True Adventures of the First Woman Filmmaker
Lights! Camera! Alice!: The Thrilling True Adventures of the First Woman Filmmaker
Publisher's Hardcover15.59
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Annotation: Describes the life and achievements of Alice Guy-Blache, the first woman filmmaker, who was one of the industry's first and greatest innovators.
Genre: [Biographies]
Catalog Number: #172052
Format: Publisher's Hardcover
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Copyright Date: 2018
Edition Date: 2018
Illustrator: Ciraolo, Simona,
Pages: 60
Availability: Available
ISBN: 1-452-14134-7
ISBN 13: 978-1-452-14134-3
Dewey: 921
LCCN: 2015040906
Dimensions: 24 x 29 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
Though the subtitle of Rockliff's newest biography touts Alice Guy-Blaché as the first woman filmmaker, some consider her the first filmmaker period; yet, her name is considerably less well-known than film pioneers Georges Méliès and the Lumière brothers. Rockliff sets the record straight as she reveals Alice's innovative use of a newfangled camera to tell entertaining stories through moving pictures. Ciraolo cleverly folds early movie elements into her illustrations: title cards introduce the different chapters of Alice's life; sequenced frames resemble movie stills; and the light from a projector cuts through an ink-black page. Film history rolls alongside Alice's career, moving from silent pictures to "talkies" to the rise of Hollywood, which ultimately shuttered Alice's own New York studio. Alice's love of stories mirrors Rockliff's own, and her author's note explains how the filmmaker was essentially edited out of film history simply because she was a woman. Young readers will be surprised that someone (Alice) had to think of using actors, sets, and costumes when making movies, and they'll undoubtedly be inspired by her moxie.
Horn Book
Mother of the Movies,
School Library Journal Starred Review
K-Gr 4 As YouTube and Netflix continue to shape how we tell stories, young students will be delighted to find a filmmaking trailblazer in Rockliff and Ciraolo's delightful picture book about Alice Guy-Blanché. As an assistant in a camera shop, story-loving Guy-Blanché saw a unique opportunity to help sell a new-fangled product: the moving-picture camera. Rather than document life, Guy-Blanché reimagined it by using film to tell stories and to further innovate techniques in special effects, color, and sound. The potentially grim story of a qualified and talented women being squeezed out by men as the film industry consolidated is balanced by buoyant text and lively illustrations. Rockliff's alternating smooth and staccato prose mirrors a movie-watching experience by soothing and jolting readers every few moments. Ciraolo's engaging illustrations complement their subject matter. Title cardstaken from Guy-Blanché's filmsdivide the stages of her life, and the arrangement of the illustrations mimics stills, storyboards, and cinematographic shots. The book ends on an open, uncertain note, wherein the intrepid filmmaker boldly writes a memoir she's not sure anyone will read. Thankfully, an afterword provides additional historical context about the "rediscovery" of Alice Guy-Blanché during her later life. A bibliography directs curious readers towards further discovery. VERDICT Subtly STEM, fun, and beautiful to look at, this take on Alice Guy-Blanché's life encourages kids to engage with cutting-edge technology and to innovate in new fields. A winning addition to most collections. Katherine Magyarody, Texas A&M University, College Station
Bibliography Index/Note: Includes bibliographical references.
Word Count: 820
Reading Level: 3.7
Interest Level: K-3
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 3.7 / points: 0.5 / quiz: 501139 / grade: Lower Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:3.5 / points:1.0 / quiz:Q75964
Lexile: 620L
Guided Reading Level: O

Meet Alice Guy-Blaché. She made movies—some of the very first movies, and some of the most exciting! Blow up a pirate ship? Why not? Crawl into a tiger's cage? Of course! Leap off a bridge onto a real speeding train? It will be easy! Driven by her passion for storytelling, Alice saw a potential for film that others had not seen before, allowing her to develop new narratives, new camera angles, new techniques, and to surprise her audiences again and again. With daring and vision, Alice Guy-Blaché introduced the world to a thrilling frontier of imagination and adventure, and became one of filmmaking's first and greatest innovators. Mara Rockliff tells the story of a girl who grew up loving stories and became an acclaimed storyteller and an inspiration in her own right.

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