photo: Casa de América (flickr)
Award-winning director and producer talks about the books he loves
The Last of the Mohicans” byJames Fenimore Cooper
– from an article on huffingtonpost.com
Before the film became famous in this century, Cooper’s historical work put American fiction on the map of history. Set at the time of the French and Indian War, contrasts abound between high-society Britons, rugged frontiersmen, and two Native American tribes. Between scenes of capture and pursuit, Fort William Henry stands as an embattled symbol of safety and defense. However, hidden racism emerges, along with questions of marriage and family, and the sacrifice that accompanies tribal membership.
“Treasure Island” by Robert Louis Stevenson
Steven Spielberg named “Treasure Island” his favorite children’s book
– from an article on nea.org
Stevenson wrote a boy’s adventure with pirates when opportunities for finding buried treasure were growing increasingly rare. Not a few drunkards die, journals and maps lead to a secret island, and a mutiny results in a nighttime battle that leads to Jim the cabin boy recapturing (and then losing) control of the ship. The moral end of the story is that bad money comes to bad ends, but the hair-raising adventures in between start and finish are a tribute to Stevenson’s own somewhat lackluster obedience to work and duty while longing for freedom.