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The Independent Critic

Nate Barlow

 "A Brief History of Hollywood" a Fun, Nostalgic Short 
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Nate Barlow's A Brief History of Hollywood is an imaginative and fiercely fun little jaunt through the iconic sign that symbolizes one's arrival in Hollywood. Originally developed as nothing more than a billboard, that's all, the sign has become representative of all things Hollywood from the days when it actually said Hollywoodland to the wide variety of promotions, events, pranks, and other events that have happened around the sign including everything from criminal activities to suicides. 

Accompanied by David James Nielsen's delightfully appropriate original music, A Brief History of Hollywood is a short doc devoid of dialogue in favor of celebrating the history of both Hollywood and the Hollywood sign through accompanying images and creatively realized text. I found myself fascinated by the actual history of Hollywood brought to life here, though I'll confess wondering why certain things were included. There's also no denying that from the 80's forward the "history" got a little heavy with the various pranks to plague the Hollywood sign rather than actual historical events. 

However, this is an absolutely entertaining film from beginning to end that has played in over 30 film fests worldwide. It's fascinating to contemplate just how far Hollywood has come over the years and how many changes have happened to filmmaking. For anyone making films or studying film, A Brief History of Hollywood should really be a mandated introduction into the history of Hollywood that anyone involved in the industry should know. 

Reportedly filmed for a remarkably low $1,000, A Brief History of Hollywood is an entertaining and loving tribute to a sign that really is much more than a sign. If you get a chance to check it out, A Brief History of Hollywood is an absolute must-see!

Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic