Film Club

Film Club

Book - 2008
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Baker & Taylor
Documents the author's efforts to impart key life lessons to his high-school-dropout son by showing him three movies every week, in an account that describes how such films as True Romance and Rosemary's Baby enabled father-and-son dialogues about a range of life issues, from relationships and work to drugs and culture. By the author of A Perfect Night to Go to China.

Hachette Book Group
"I loved David Gilmour's sleek, potent little memoir, The Film Club. It's so, so wise in the ways of fathers and sons, of movies and movie-goers, of love and loss."
--- Richard Russo, Pulitzer Prize winning author of Empire Falls

"If all sons had dads like David Gilmour, then Oedipus would be a forgotten legend and Father's Day would be a worldwide film festival."

--Sean Wilsey, author of Oh the Glory of It All

"David Gilmour is a very unlikely moral guidance counselor: he's broke, more or less unemployed and has two children by two different women. Yet when it looks as though his teenage son is about to go off the rails, he reaches out to him through the only subject he knows anything about: the movies. The result is an object lesson in how fathers should talk to their sons." --Toby Young, author of How to Lose Friends & Alienate People

At the start of this brilliantly unconventional family memoir, David Gilmour is an unemployed movie critic trying to convince his fifteen-year-old son Jesse to do his homework. When he realizes Jesse is beginning to view learning as a loathsome chore, he offers his son an unconventional deal: Jesse could drop out of school, not work, not pay rent - but he must watch three movies a week of his father's choosing.

Week by week, side by side, father and son watched everything from True Romance to Rosemary's Baby to Showgirls, and films by Akira Kurosawa, Martin Scorsese, Brian DePalma, Billy Wilder, among others. The movies got them talking about Jesse's life and his own romantic dramas, with mercurial girlfriends, heart-wrenching breakups, and the kind of obsessive yearning usually seen only in movies.

Through their film club, father and son discussed girls, music, work, drugs, money, love, and friendship - and their own lives changed in surprising ways.

& Taylor

Documents the author's efforts to impart key life lessons to his high-school-dropout son by showing him three movies every week, in an account that describes how the films enabled dialogues about a range of life issues.

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing, 2008
Edition: ON ORDER
ISBN: 9780446199292


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WVMLStaffPicks Feb 01, 2015

This is a wonderful biography that promotes intense debate and is a delight to read. With his son failing miserably at school, Gilmour decides to offer him the opportunity to take a year off if he agrees to watch three films a week with his father. One year turns into three, and father and son go on a rollercoaster ride of emotion as the son suffers the slings and arrows of romance and Gilmour suffers the cruelties of the job market. You will never look at movies the same way again.

Apr 24, 2014

Fifteen-year-old Jesse could leave school under a couple of conditions. One: he had to avoid getting involved with drugs. Two: he had to watch three movies a week with his father, a former film critic. Dad picked the films, and all Jesse had to do was pay attention. What followed is one of the riskiest experiments in alternative education I have ever seen. Was David 100% sure this was an ideal solution? Heck no, but he thought it was worth a try.

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Nov 29, 2012

Reading this light biography is worth it for the movie information alone – I feel inspired to make a copy of the index in this book and watch every film on it. The family dynamic surrounding the film club is also fascinating. We get a frank look right into how a family is living at a crucial time in a teenager’s life. It was hard to cringe past what seems like appallingly bad parenting decisions, but this family is still understandable even while running in completely different circles than I do.

Dec 31, 2011

Father son relationship stuff. Feels very true.

Aug 02, 2011

An easy and quick read. I was really interested in the whole family dynamic. The relationship he has with his teenage son and ex wife was surprising to me. I was more interested in the movie descriptions than anything. You can really tell the passion David has for film and it really made me want to watch the movies he was describing and look for the scenes that had such an impact on him.

Aug 24, 2010

I always like David Gilmour as a filem critic and really enjoyed this glimpse into his and his family's life. Especially enjoyed the references to movies and movie techniques as well as the 'prairie' connection. It was refreshing to read about a spouse's fond regard for an ex rather than the expose type bashing that passes for a book today.

ser_library Jul 03, 2010

even though i do not see movies in the theatre or on dvd i loved this quick read

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