My Copy: 9781879505629 (image from bn.com)
I’ve read about Walter Murch before, and just refreshed my memory of some of the things he talks about in this book by watching Apocalypse Now (and it’s documentaries) again.
In The Blink of An Eye is not an autobiography or technical guide, but very much a perspective on how this award-winning and brilliant editor learned and worked at his trade. This book is great for giving you a very basic history of film editing, and some real-world examples of difficulties in editing movies, the different types of technology in use, directors worked with, etc.
It’s not too technical a book, and does have an expansive section on digital film editing (now that that’s the primary method), but even details regarding equipment and techniques that are no longer in vogue can teach you a lot.
I want to learn how to be a filmmaker, and I think this book is a good guide for what someone should keep in mind to put the film together. Yes, the director (or you) may have a vision, but after all the film’s taken and sent on, what will the end result be. This book is about what your eye sees, what it will process and the variety of possibilities that occur with every blink.
I heard Werner Herzog talking about this Mr Murch and this book and had to snatch it up. Worth a read if you want to be a filmmaker; it gives you a good idea of how to be a successful film editor and have their eyes to make a great film work.
Happy filming (and it’s not that expensive a book, less than 200 pages–you can do it!)