ReFocus: The Films of Delmer Daves, Matthew Carter & Andrew Patrick Nelson, eds

The American director Delmer Daves has never enjoyed the critical attention lavished on other Hollywood professionals such as Don Siegel. Finally, however, in this collection of insightful new essays on the life and work of the veteran Hollywood filmmaker, he is granted his critical due. This collection of pieces (covering the director’s entire career, including his shamelessly enjoyable ‘women’s pictures’ such as A Summer Place and Parrish) aims to enrich both our appreciation of the director’s work and changing perceptions of him as simple studio craftsman. Carter and Nelson are unlikely to persuade the reader that Daves is an artist on the level of, say, Anthony Mann (who also worked in the Western genre, to much greater effect), but the perceptive and provocative case studies of such film as Broken Arrow (1950), 3:10 to Yuma (1957) and Destination Tokyo (1943) produce much fascinating analysis here.

ReFocus: The Films of Delmer Daves, Edited by Matthew Carter, Manchester Metropolitan University and Andrew Patrick Nelson, Montana State University


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