Film Review (magazine)
Film Review was a magazine which first appeared in 1950, initially for a 3-issue trial run, and continued until 2008.
It was originally titled "ABC Film Review", being tied in with ABC cinemas. At the time it was just 20 pages and cost 3 Old Pence. It was published by Associated British in association with Pathé and produced by Axtell Publications Ltd. of London, and the only credited contributor was James McCrossan. After the trial's success it became a full monthly magazine from January 1951 costing 4d until Dec 1951.
Price was increased in Jan 1952 to 6d and stayed at 6d until August 1968, which was a complete run except for the issues for August and September, 1959, which were not published owing to a national printers strike in the UK that summer (a fate that befell many magazines and newspapers at the time). Price from Sept 1968 was 9d until Sept 1970, when decimalisation came in and price changed to 5p (1/-) in Oct 1970. Price changed again in May 1972, when it increased to 10p. At this time, the name changed to just Film Review; the ABC was dropped from then on. It continued to appear as a monthly magazine until 2008. The next to last edition, a double-issue, number 699/700, for August/ September 2008, edited by Nikki Baughan, had 220 pages and was priced at £4.99. The last edition was issue number 701 issued in November and dated December 2008, had 148 pages and was priced at £3.99.
Contributors have included Peter S Haigh, Vincent Firth, Norman Taylor, David Richardson, Tony Crawley, Marianne Gray, Judy Sloane, Alan Jones, Tom Hutchinson, Nigel Robinson, Jason Caro, Roald Rynning, Howard Maxford, James Cameron-Wilson, Michael Darvell, Stephen Applebaum, Anwar Brett, Lorien Haynes and James Mottram. There was a readers' Q&A page with questions answered originally by Peter Noble and later on David McGillivray. James Cameron-Wilson, a commissioning editor of the magazine, also eventually took over this section.
Having started out as a promotional magazine for the ABC circuit, Film Review became a very good popular film monthly, packed with news and information, literate reviews and an emphasis on the pictorial as well as the written word. For nearly sixty years it never lost its initial and essential aim of appealing to film fanatics. Its position was taken over by other more successful film publications which forced it off the shelves.
Film Review ceased printed publication by Visual Imagination Ltd in 2009. It has no connection with the Film Review annual which was launched in 1944 and is currently published by Signum Books. Originally edited by F. Maurice Speed, it was taken over by James Cameron-Wilson and is now jointly edited by Michael Darvell and Mansel Stimpson with Cameron-Wilson serving as executive editor. Its 70th edition is due out on 2 November 2015.