Joe Queenan is a highly entertaining writer on film, author of a number of books and many columns like this one where he overviews a large number of flicks in considering a theme, actor, genre or director.
In short, along with the likes of legendary producer Art Linson, his writing is a great tool for expanding your knowledge of film.
I've picked out a single quote from a lengthy feature reflecting on the career of 87 year-old Clint Eastwood, The Man With No Name apart from Dirty Harry and so forth. A 40 DVD Eastwood boxset has been released - I estimate I've seen about 30 of those flicks - and Queenan's take is fair on this huge collection and those that were excluded from the set (though Any Which But Loose is fun as well as dumb!).
In terms of learning cinematic technique, it's the excluded Spaghetti Western dollar trilogy I'd recommend - the boxset of those has great extras showing how director Sergio Leone worked - and he in turn borrowed liberally from the great Japanese auteur Akira Kurosawa, whose Yojimbo and Seven Samurai remain masterpieces more than a half century later.
Here he sums up the nature of the industry in one pithy statement:
Movie-making is not so much a process of making new films as of remaking old ones.
He goes on to add:
Stories work today because they worked yesterday. People never get tired of seeing good triumph over evil, because the only place they ever get to see this happen is in the cinema.
The meaning of Clint: what watching 40 Eastwood films has taught me https://www.theguardian.com/film/2017/aug/03/clint-eastwood-what-watching-40-films-box-set-taught-me?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Blogger