RARA-AVIS: Now Playing at the Valencia - Stephen Hunter

From: Chris M ( cptpipes@hotmail.com)
Date: 15 May 2006

Based on a suggestion on the George Pelecanos web site, I recently read Stephen Hunter's NOW PLAYING AT THE VALENCIA, a collection of moviee reviews originally written for the Washington Post.

We've discussed Hunter before, but my own story is that I picked up Hunter's DIRTY WHITE BOYS at an airport when I was in college, read it in a weekend, and was thrilled a few years later when I realized, "Hey, the critic for my hometown paper is the same guy who wrote that book I liked a few years back. And his writing about movies are fun to read too."

As for NOW PLAYING AT THE VALENCIA, pages 27-31 should be required reading for everyone on the list. It's an essay he wrote a week after his review of L.A. Confidental (the movie) spurred a ton of calls from readers asking
"What is film noir." Hunter's answer: "I don't know." But it's obviously a subject he's passionate about, and it's a great read as he covers the bases.

I'd be particularly interested in Jim D.'s comments. But anyone else who has read it, please chime in.

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