Books

A Century of Films: Derek Malcolm’s Personal Best

a-century-of-filmsInvited by the Guardian newspaper to explore his choice of one hundred films in a weekly column over the two years spanning the millennium, Derek Malcolm set out on a project which has attracted much attention and has resulted in this stimulating, entertaining and surprising personal view of world cinema.

This is not a ‘best of’ but a critical celebration of one hundred films based on unparalleled knowledge and understanding of what cinema can achieve, he not only gives pleasure to filmgoers, but introduces readers to films that they may not yet have discovered, encouraging us to experience a wider range of the riches that the international cinema has to offer.

Whether giving new ways of seeing a familiar – not necessarily best-known – film from a well-known director, or celebrating a lesser known gem, whether writing about stars and actors, cinematographers, or moments of cinematic grace, Derek Malcolm demonstrates how it is that he has earned his place as one of the world’s most celebrated film critics.

 

Family Secrets by Derek Malcolm

family-secretsHidden under some papers in his father’s bureau, the sixteen-year-old Derek Malcolm finds a book by the famous criminologist, Edgar Lustgarten called “The Judges and the Damned”. Browsing through the Contents pages Derek reads, ‘Mr. Justice McCardie tries Lieutenant Malcolm – page 33.’ But there is no page 33. The whole chapter has been ripped out of the book.

Derek’s father, it emerges, shot his wife’s lover and was acquitted at a famous trial at the Old Bailey. The trial was unique in British legal history as the first case of a crime passionel, where a guilty man is set free, on the grounds of self-defence. Husband and wife lived together unhappily ever after. After his father’s death, Derek received an open postcard from his Aunt Phyllis, which baldly informed him that his real father was the Italian Ambassador to London…By turns laconic and affectionate, Derek Malcolm has written a richly evocative memoir of a family sinking into hopeless disrepair.

 

 

Robert Mitchum by Derek Malcolm

Robert-Mitchum-by-Derek-MalcolmBiography of Robert Charles Durman Mitchum (August 6, 1917 – July 1, 1997), the American film actor, author, composer and singer.