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The B List

The B List

The National Society of Film Critics on the Low-Budget Beauties, Genre-Bending Mavericks, and Cult

What kind of collection could possibly find common ground among The Son of Kong, Platoon, and Pink Flamingos? What kind of fevered minds could conceive of such a list? What are the unheard-of qualities that tie them all together?

The answers: This book. The National Society of Film Critics. And the far-reaching enticements of the B movie itself.

Once the B movie was the Hollywood stepchild, the underbelly of the double feature. Today it is a more inclusive category, embracing films that fall outside the mainstream by dint of their budgets, their visions, their grit, and occasionally—sometimes essentially—their lack of what the culture cops call “good taste.”

The films in The B List are offbeat, unpredictable, and decidedly idiosyncratic. And that’s why we love them.

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Genre: Nonfiction / Performing Arts / Film

On Sale: October 20th 2008

Price: $2.99 / $3.99 (CAD)

Page Count: 256

ISBN-13: 9780786726509

What's Inside

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Reader Reviews

Praise

Publishers Weekly, 11/10/08
“These brief essays celebrate well the reckless streak that runs through Hollywood.”
 


InfoDad.com, 11/13/08
“Fun for fans of films that, in most cases, never quite made the A list because they wouldn’t be caught dead there.”
 


BookPage, December 2008
“Reminds us why it’s OK to love movies that have never made a ’10 best’ list.”
 

Skyscraper, Winter 08
“An engaging, lively read for die-hard B movie fans or those interested in knowing what to watch for at local DVD rental stores or on late-night television.”
 


Magill Book Reviews
"With a good mixture of familiar and obscure titles, the critics provide acute observations...The essays are insightful and entertaining. The best make the writers' enthusiasms infectious."
 


Word blog, 12/29/08
"The films in The B List are offbeat, unpredictable, and decidedly idiosyncratic. That's why we love them. That's why we love this book. A great collection of essays."


Bitch, 1/09
“Cover[s] a diverse set of films…Offers the cinephile a pleasant enough way to while away a few hours…May even alert readers to movies they’ve missed.”


SLUG (Salt Lake Underground)
"A good read…It throws caution to the wind and zooms in on films whose conception, lurid upbringings and dubious character traits would drive most people away. This is a fantastic resource for cult film buffs the world over.”


Atlanta Daily Report, 12/19/08
“There are some terrific pieces by all kinds of movie critics you’ve heard about, usually writing about movies you’ve never heard about.”

Filmbill, October 2008
“Perhaps The B List is at its best when it makes a real genre film like The Rage: Carrie 2 seem legitimate, while showing that a cult classic like Pink Flamingos may not be as good as its reputation might suggest. Such are the delights of this collection, which truly offers something for everyone.”
Santa Fe New Mexican, 10/10/08
“[An] entertaining compilation of essays.”
Norfolk Virginian-Pilot, 10/26/08
“The writing is generally good, often excellent. Editors David Sterritt and John Anderson have done a good job of selecting essayists with an interesting variety of viewpoints and styles…[A] worthwhile book.”

Editors Guild
“A tome that will set nicely on the shelf beside your movie collection and provide rewarding reading as a supplement to the film viewing experience.”
Kirkus Reviews, Reference Special Issue, 2008
“Downright fun…Diversity can be found here aplenty, with fan favorites like The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Reservoir Dogs, to stalwarts like The Son of Kong. They’ve also included some questionable picks like The Rage: Carrie 2 that will likely spark debate among film enthusiasts. The surprises, however, are the beauty of The B List.”
Augusta Metro Spirit, 10/15/08
“The National Society of Film Critics come together for an amazing array of sub-mainstream memory in The B List…The list of contributors is enough to make a movie fan’s mouth water…Some of the most knowledgeable people in the movie field provide an outstanding collection of memories, opinions, and even analysis…The writers in this volume offer an expansive view of where the film world has been and where it seems to go when the mainstream isn’t quite ready…Collected with an intricate knowledge of B-movie production and complete with viewer guides and arguments for each of the movies selected, The B List is a welcome companion to the book collection of any movie fan who sometimes steps beyond the simplicity of the mainstream theater.”
Total Film, November 2008
“A few questionable choices in the National Society of Film Critics’ round-up of B-movie ‘beauties,’ but they’re argued with authority and panache. Besides, it doesn’t hurt to have a couple of curveballs alongside all the usual cult suspects.”
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