Pauline KAEL ... American Film Critic Extraordinaire
PAULINE KAEL (1919-2001) was an American film critic who used to write for The New Yorker magazine, among others. Her movie criticisms were acerbic, barbed and witty to the core. Her sense of humour was wicked to the bone. And she was not one to be afraid of using colloquialism and slang in her reviews. Most of the time, it was more interesting to read her reviews than to watch the movies. She was, however, anti-intellectual and genuine in her approach to movies. Lately, I have been reading some of her old reviews from old newspaper cut-outs. She has been writing film criticism since the 1950s and has compiled her reviews in many suggestively-titled collections. They are hard to find in Kuala Lumpur. I remember selling and reading a couple of them when I was running a bookshop back in the mid-1980s. Yes, they were unputdownable. Read For Keeps: 30 Years at the Movies (1994) and Deeper Into Movies: The Essential Kael Collection, From 1969 to 1972 (1973: winner of the 1974 National Book Award for Arts and Letters) for an introduction to her writings.
KAEL Pauline [1919-2001] Film critic. Born in Petaluma, Sonoma County, California, U.S. Film Criticism Conversations with Pauline Kael (ed. Will Brantley) (1996); For Keeps: 30 Years at the Movies (1994); Movie Love: Complete Reviews, 1988-1991 (1991); Hooked: Film Writings, 1985-1988 (1989); State of the Art: Film Writings, 1983-1985 (1985); Taking It All In: Film Writings, 1980-1983 (1984); 5001 Nights at the Movies: A Guide from A to Z (1982); When the Lights Go Down (1980); Reeling (1976); Deeper Into Movies: The Essential Kael Collection, From 1969 to 1972 (1973: winner of the 1974 National Book Award for Arts and Letters); The Citizen Kane Book (1971); Going Steady: Film Writings, 1968-1969 (1970); Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (1968); I Lost It at the Movies: Film Writings, 1954-1965 (1965)