Friday, August 28, 2020

Review: 'Fashion in the 1960s'

The 1960s were not always rich in substance (welcome to Gilligan’s Island!), but the decade’s style was often unimpeachable. Before frumpy hippie non-fashions took over toward the end of the sixties, sharp lines, vivid colors, eccentric materials, and wild op-art patterns defined the decade. The sixties were also very notable for making a place for men on the runway. It seems like we’ve been shut out of genuinely exciting fashions ever since.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Review: 'Alien Invasions! The History of Aliens in Popular Culture'

Because it isn’t very likely that aliens from other worlds have ever visited Earth, they can be imagined in any number of ways. Are they tentacled, bulbous-brained beasts? Are they green-skinned seductresses in brass bikinis and weird headgear? Are they friendly little, big-eyed chaps who just want to go (and phone) home? Are they hostile? Neutral? Are they super advanced or super primitive? Are they from distant galaxies or our very own moon?

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Review: 'Planet Wax: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Soundtracks on Vinyl'

There have been a lot of compilations of album cover art, and they’re usually good for a flip-through but lack focus and insight. Planet Wax: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Soundtracks on Vinyl is in a whole other universe. Collecting the covers of sci-fi and fantasy soundtracks, Aaron Lupton and Jeff Szpirglas’s new book has a specific focus and is atypically enlightening.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Review: 'Fright Favorites: 31 Movies to Haunt Your Halloween and Beyond'

It was hard enough boiling a century of horror cinema down to 200 spook shows. Imagine having to whittle it down to 31.

I understand the significance of the number—just enough to watch a single picture on each night of October—but its skimpiness skirts inconsequence. Normally, I wouldn’t even bother with a book like Fright Favorites: 31 Movies to Haunt Your Halloween and Beyond. I made an exception because its author is the David Bordwell of horror: David J. Skal, the writer of such essential tomes as The Monster Show: A Cultural History of Horror, Hollywood Gothic: The Tangled Web of Dracula from Novel to Stage to Screen, and Death Makes a Holiday: A Cultural History of Halloween.

All written content of is the property of Mike Segretto and may not be reprinted or reposted without permission.