As long as movies have been around, marriage in film has been one of the key story lines. In her newest book Jeanine Basinger walks through the history of marriage and it’s portrayal in cinema from the silent era all the way to the modern. This is a fascinating and in-depth look at marriage on the silver screen. Basinger dives deep into the reasons for the ways marriage has been and is portrayed in the movies; the business side, the story side and the expectations of the audience. Each of these has worked to craft a particular picture of marriage that has gone on to actually shape the perceptions of the viewer. Interestingly, as movies worked to imitate life, life as begun to imitate the movies.
This book is not just for those who are lovers of film, it is also for anyone who is interested in the change society has had in respect to what a marriage is and what it should be. Walking away from this book it is clear that marriage has not only been molded by the movies but the expectations that people have are being shaped by Hollywood as well. It seems that even though people understand that movies are just entertainment they can’t help wishing that life was more like the movies.
I highly recommend this book for film buffs and the novice. I also recommend this book to anyone who is interested in marriage. This book will leave you with a better understanding of the way marriage is seen now and give a context for why that is. This is one of the best books I have read this year and am certain that it will be on my top 10 list at the end of the year.
(Personally, I found that I have fallen into may of the same traps Hollywood screen marriages have because I have bought the idea that they have sold me on what a marriage should be. For a better look at marriage and the reasons for it I recommend, The Meaning of Marriage by Timothy and Kathy Keller.)