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The Coen Brothers Encyclopedia

Lynnea Chapman King

Joel and Ethan Coen have written and directed some of the most celebrated American films of the last thirty years. The output of their work has embraced a wide range of genres, including the neo-noirs Blood Simple and The Man Who Wasn’t There, the absurdist comedy Raising Arizona, and the violent gangster film Miller’s Crossing. Whether producing original works like Fargo and Barton Fink or drawing on inspiration from literature, such as Charles Portis’ True Grit or Cormac McCarthy’s No Country for Old Men, the brothers put their distinctive stamp on each film.

The Coen Brothers Encyclopedia, all aspects of these gifted siblings as writers, directors, producers, and even editors—in the guise of Roderick Jaynes—are discussed. Entries in this volume focus on creative personnel behind the camera, including costume designers, art directors, and frequent contributors like cinematographer Roger Deakins and composer Carter Burwell. Recurring actors are also represented, such as Jeff Bridges, Steve Buscemi, George Clooney, John Goodman, Holly Hunter, Frances McDormand, and John Turturro. Each entry is followed by a bibliography of published sources, both in print and online.

Blood Simple to Inside Llewyn Davis, The Coen Brothers Encyclopedia is a comprehensive reference on two of the most significant filmmakers of the last three decades. An engaging examination of their work, this volume will appeal to scholars, researchers, and fans interested in this creative duo.
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Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Pages: 228Size: 7 1/4 x 10 1/2
978-0-8108-8576-9 • Hardback • October 2014 • $85.00 • (£54.95)
978-0-8108-8577-6 • eBook • October 2014 • $80.00 • (£52.95)
Lynnea Chapman King is professor of English, Adams State University (Alamosa, Colorado). She is the coeditor of No Country for Old Men: From Novel to Film (Scarecrow, 2009).

Entries A-Z

About the Author
King offers a bare-bones, alphabetically arranged reference work on the Coen brothers (Ethan and Joel), their films, and creative collaborators. Entries for people—from actors to writers, e.g., George Clooney, Tom Hanks. Sam Raimi, or Barry Sonnenfeld—feature a career summary followed by a discussion of their work with the Coens. The longest entries (4-6 pages) are for the films. For each of these, a fact box precedes a detailed plot synopsis, followed by a few production notes and summary of critical reception. All entries conclude with a short list of references and cross-references to other entries. Contents are current through the filmmakers' Inside Llewyn Davis (2013). The volume also provides a filmography that includes the Coens' other work on television ads, acting, and writing, and ends with a half-page selective bibliography. The most extensive entry is about the Coen brothers themselves. It includes biographical details but focuses primarily on their films. . . .Summing Up: Recommended. All readership levels.

This is a highly readable, fascinating work that will be a suitable addition to both film and large library collections.
American Reference Books Annual

The Coen Brothers Encyclopedia by Lynne Chapman King tells you everything you want to know about the filmmaking duo. From 'Blood Simple' to 'Inside Llewyn Davis', the directors’ catalog is covered.
Campus Circle