Movies from Bob Dylan

Children of Paradise

Filmed during the German occupation, this French milestone centers around the theatrical life of a beautiful courtesan and the four men who love her. Voted the “Best French Film in History” by the French Film Academy in 1990.
Bob Dylan
Musician
By most accounts, the makeup was inspired by the 1945 French film Children of Paradise.
Movies from Bob Dylan

A Face in the Crowd

The rise of a raucous hayseed named Lonesome Rhodes from itinerant Ozark guitar picker to local media rabble-rouser to TV superstar and political king-maker. Marcia Jeffries is the innocent Sarah Lawrence girl who discovers the great man in a back-country jail and is the first to fall under his spell.
Bob Dylan
Musician
Dylan's passion for film continued in New York, often at the Waverly Theater on Sixth Avenue, minutes from his pad. Two films impressed him during the year, he told me. Lonely Are the Brave starred Kirk Douglas as an individualist in a modern West that was being eroded by supermarkets and superhighways. The hero failed, pursuing ideals, being blotted out by "progress". The other film was A Face in the Crowd, from a Budd Schulberg story. It starred Andy Griffith as a guitar-picking "country boy" who became a celebrity, affecting advertising, TV, and, ultimately, national politics.
Movies from Bob Dylan

La Dolce Vita

Journalist and man-about-town Marcello struggles to find his place in the world, torn between the allure of Rome's elite social scene and the stifling domesticity offered by his girlfriend, all the while searching for a way to become a serious writer.
Bob Dylan
Musician
There was an art movie house in the Village on 12th Street that showed foreign movies – French, Italian, German. This made sense, because even Alan Lomax himself, the great folk archivist, had said somewhere that if you want to get out to America, go to Greenwich Village. I’d seen a couple of Italian Fellini movies there – one called La Strada, which means “The Street,” and another one called La Dolce Vita. It was about a guy who sells his soul and becomes a gossip hound. It looked like life in a carnival mirror except it didn’t show any monster freaks – just real people in a freaky way. I watched it intently, thinking that I might not see it again.
Movies from Bob Dylan

La Strada

When Gelsomina, a naïve young woman, is purchased from her impoverished mother by brutish circus strongman Zampanò to be his wife and partner, she loyally endures her husband's coldness and abuse as they travel the Italian countryside performing together. Soon Zampanò must deal with his jealousy and conflicted feelings about Gelsomina when she finds a kindred spirit in Il Matto, the carefree circus fool, and contemplates leaving Zampanò.
Bob Dylan
Musician
There was an art movie house in the Village on 12th Street that showed foreign movies – French, Italian, German. This made sense, because even Alan Lomax himself, the great folk archivist, had said somewhere that if you want to get out to America, go to Greenwich Village. I’d seen a couple of Italian Fellini movies there – one called La Strada, which means “The Street,” and another one called La Dolce Vita. It was about a guy who sells his soul and becomes a gossip hound. It looked like life in a carnival mirror except it didn’t show any monster freaks – just real people in a freaky way. I watched it intently, thinking that I might not see it again.
Movies from Bob Dylan

Lonely Are the Brave

A fiercely independent cowboy arranges to have himself locked up in jail in order to then escape with an old friend who has been sentenced to the penitentiary.
Bob Dylan
Musician
Dylan's passion for film continued in New York, often at the Waverly Theater on Sixth Avenue, minutes from his pad. Two films impressed him during the year, he told me. Lonely Are the Brave starred Kirk Douglas as an individualist in a modern West that was being eroded by supermarkets and superhighways. The hero failed, persuing ideals, being blotted out by "progress".
Movies from Bob Dylan

Blackboard Jungle

Richard Dadier is a teacher at North Manual High School, an inner-city school where many of the pupils frequently engage in anti-social behavior. Dadier makes various attempts to engage the students' interest in education, challenging both the school staff and the pupils. He is subjected to violence as well as duplicitous schemes.
Bob Dylan
Musician
Bob Dylan’s high school classmate Larry Hoikkala, after the two of them saw “The Blackboard Jungle”: Bob couldn’t believe it. … he kept saying, “This is really great! This is exactly what we’ve been trying to tell people about ourselves… Looking back that film really changed our lives because for the first time, we felt it was talking directly to us.
Movies from Bob Dylan

The Wild One

The Black Rebels Motorcycle Club ride into the small California town of Wrightsville, eager to raise hell. Brooding gang leader Johnny Strabler takes a liking to Kathie, the daughter of the local lawman, as another club rolls into town.
Bob Dylan
Musician
Almost overnight Bobby metamorphosed from a wussy squirt into Hibbing’s protopunk. Ge redid himself from head to toe, like a fashion model undergoing a beauty makeover. Along with another impressionable school chum, Bobby made a beeline for Feldman’s basement, the uncharted bluye-collar section of the store, where he picked out stuff Levi’s, black biker’s boots, and a leather motorcycle jacket similar to the one Brando wore in The Wild One.
Movies from Bob Dylan

Rebel Without a Cause

After moving to a new town, troublemaking teen Jim Stark is supposed to have a clean slate, although being the new kid in town brings its own problems. While searching for some stability, Stark forms a bond with a disturbed classmate, Plato, and falls for local girl Judy. However, Judy is the girlfriend of neighborhood tough, Buzz. When Buzz violently confronts Jim and challenges him to a drag race, the new kid's real troubles begin.
Bob Dylan
Musician
It was at the State Theater, in the fall of 1955, that a movie and its enigmatic star gave Bobby the first peek at the combustible properties of attitude and self-expression. On a crisp autumn day, he sat mesmerized by the premier showing of Rebel Without a Cause, a stagy morality play about teenage restlessness in suburbia… It ever the term “born-again” applied to Bob Dylan it was then, following this celluloid revelation. He had gotten a glimpse of the future up on the screen in the form of James Dean, teenage rebel, and it appealed to his sensibility.
Books from Bob Dylan

The History of the Peloponnesian War



Bob Dylan
Musician
A narrative which would give you the chills. It was written four hundred years before Christ and it talks about how human nature is always the enemy of anything superior. Thucydides writes about how words in his time have changed from their ordinary meaning, how actions and opinions can be altered in the blink of an eye. It’s like nothing has changed from his time to mine.
Books from Bob Dylan

On the Road

On the Road swings to the rhythms of 1950s underground America, jazz, sex, generosity, chill dawns and drugs, with Sal Paradise and his hero Dean Moriarty, traveller and mystic, the living epitome of Beat. Now recognized as a modern classic, its American Dream is nearer that of Walt Whitman than Scott Fitzgerald, and it goes racing towards the sunset with unforgettable exuberance, poignancy and autobiographical passion.Contains an introduction by Ann Charters, as well as suggestions for further reading of acclaimed criticisms and references.
Bob Dylan
Musician
“On the Road speeds by like a freight train,” Dylan tells me. “It’s all movement and words and lusty instincts that come alive like you’re riding on a train. Kerouac moves so fast with his words. No ambiguity. It was very emblematic of the time. You grabbed a hold of the train, hopped on and went along with him, hanging on for dear life. I think that’s what affected me more than whatever he was writing about. It was his style of writing that affected us in such a virile way. I tried reading some of his books later, but I never felt that movement again.
Books from Bob Dylan

Mexico City Blues

La selección de poemas que componen este volumen es el tributo que el traductor Ronaldo Costa Picazo rinde a Jack Kerouac. Ya nadie discute que, en su papel de icono como rebelde, Kerouac encabezó la última vanguardia del siglo XX, y que su obra inició una etapa revisionista del canon literario y abrió las puertas a la obra de minorías. Los poemas de Mexico City Blues, escritos entre agosto y los primeros días de septiembre de 1955, fueron compuestos bajo la influencia de la marihuana y de la morfina. En ellos aparecen muchas de las ideas expresadas por Kerouac en sus novelas y, como todos los poemas de los beats, las composiciones de México City Blues se inscriben en una poética de tono religioso-místico, personalista y experimental.
Bob Dylan
Musician
Dylan contemplated Kerouac’s headstone." Why that particular collection? "Someone handed me Mexico City Blues in St. Paul in 1959,” Wilentz quotes Dylan as having told Ginsberg. “It blew my mind.”
Books from Bob Dylan

One Hundred Dollar Misunderstanding

The original version has finally been restored restored. ... Jimmy is a college boy who thinks he knows all about sex-until he meets Kitten. She is dazzled by the hundred-dollar wad he is carrying in his pocket and is prepared to go to any lengths for it. This is the story of a riotous, crazy weekend for two young people from different ends of the American social scale.
Bob Dylan
Musician
I got a friend who wrote a book, it’s called ‘One Hundred Dollar Misunderstanding,’ it’s about this straight-A college kid, fraternity guy, and a 14-year-old negro prostitute, and it’s got two dialogues in the same book. One chapter is what he’s doing and what he does, and the next chapter is her view of him. It actually comes out and states something that’s actually true… This guy who wrote it, you can’t label him. He’s unlabelable
Books recommended by Bob Dylan
5 books

Books That Shaped Bob Dylan in Childhood

I had principles and sensibilities and an informed view of the world. And I had had that for a while. Learned it all in grammar school. Don Quixote, Ivanhoe, Robinson Crusoe, Gulliver’s Travels, Tale of Two Cities, all the rest – typical grammar school reading that gave you a way of looking at life, an understanding of human nature, and a standard to measure things by. I took all that with me when I started composing lyrics.
Bob Dylan
Musician
I had principles and sensibilities and an informed view of the world. And I had had that for a while. Learned it all in grammar school. Don Quixote, Ivanhoe, Robinson Crusoe, Gulliver’s Travels, Tale of Two Cities, all the rest – typical grammar school reading that gave you a way of looking at life, an understanding of human nature, and a standard to measure things by. I took all that with me when I started composing lyrics.
Books from Bob Dylan

The Odyssey of Homer



Bob Dylan
Musician
The Odyssey is a great book whose themes have worked its way into the ballads of a lot of songwriters: “Homeward Bound, “Green, Green Grass of Home,” “Home on the Range,” and my songs as well. The Odyssey is a strange, adventurous tale of a grown man trying to get home after fighting in a war. He’s on that long journey home, and it’s filled with traps and pitfalls. He’s cursed to wander. He’s always getting carried out to sea, always having close calls. Huge chunks of boulders rock his boat. He angers people he shouldn’t. There’s troublemakers in his crew. Treachery. His men are turned into pigs and then are turned back into younger, more handsome men. He’s always trying to rescue somebody. He’s a travelin’ man, but he’s making a lot of stops.
Books from Bob Dylan

Erich Maria Remarque's All Quiet on the Western Front

This 1929 novel served as Remarque's attempt to confront and ultimately rid himself of the graphic and haunting memories of his time serving in World War I. A novel with overtones of autobiography, All Quiet on the Western Front traces the evolution of one man's powerful antiwar sentiments. This new title in the Bloom's Guides series also features an annotated bibliography, a listing of other works by the author, and an introduction by literary scholar Harold Bloom.
Bob Dylan
Musician
All Quiet on the Western Front was another book that did. All Quiet on the Western Front is a horror story. This is a book where you lose your childhood, your faith in a meaningful world, and your concern for individuals. You’re stuck in a nightmare. Sucked up into a mysterious whirlpool of death and pain. You’re defending yourself from elimination. You’re being wiped off the face of the map. Once upon a time you were an innocent youth with big dreams about being a concert pianist. Once you loved life and the world, and now you’re shooting it to pieces.
Books from Bob Dylan

Moby Dick

A literary classic that wasn't recognized for its merits until decades after its publication, Herman Melville's Moby-Dick tells the tale of a whaling ship and its crew, who are carried progressively further out to sea by the fiery Captain Ahab. Obsessed with killing the massive whale, which had previously bitten off Ahab's leg, the seasoned seafarer steers his ship to confront the creature, while the rest of the shipmates, including the young narrator, Ishmael, and the harpoon expert, Queequeg, must contend with their increasingly dire journey. The book invariably lands on any short list of the greatest American novels.
Bob Dylan
Musician
Moby Dick is a fascinating book, a book that’s filled with scenes of high drama and dramatic dialogue. The book makes demands on you. The plot is straightforward. The mysterious Captain Ahab – captain of a ship called the Pequod – an egomaniac with a peg leg pursuing his nemesis, the great white whale Moby Dick who took his leg. And he pursues him all the way from the Atlantic around the tip of Africa and into the Indian Ocean. He pursues the whale around both sides of the earth. It’s an abstract goal, nothing concrete or definite. He calls Moby the emperor, sees him as the embodiment of evil. Ahab’s got a wife and child back in Nantucket that he reminisces about now and again. You can anticipate what will happen.
Music from Bob Dylan

Robert Johnson

Bob Dylan
Musician
From the first note the vibrations from the loudspeaker made my hair stand up. The stabbing sounds from the guitar could almost break a window. When Johnson started singing, he seemed like a guy who could have sprung from the head of Zeus in full armour. I immediately differentiated between him and anyone else I had ever heard.
Music from Bob Dylan

Ma Rainey

Bob Dylan
Musician
Dylan said he was always a fan of the passion Ma Rainey brought to her singing. The great blues singer, who died in 1939 aged 53, is namechecked in his song Tombstone Blues, and Dylan also once wrote a song called Yonder Comes Sin, an update of Rainey’s Yonder Comes the Blues.
Music from Bob Dylan

John Lee Hooker

Bob Dylan
Musician
Dylan said he considered John Lee Hooker, one of the "true great bluesmen". On his 1966 Basement Tapes, Dyland recorded a version of Hooker’s Tupelo.
Music from Bob Dylan

Tommy Makem

Bob Dylan
Musician
Dylan said that when he was young and learning his trade he was also influenced by the "rebellion songs" of Tommy Makem.
Music from Bob Dylan

Liam Clancy

Bob Dylan
Musician
The best ballad singer I ever heard in my life
Music from Bob Dylan

Ramblin' Jack Elliott

Bob Dylan
Musician
Ramblin' Jack was a musical hero," said Dylan. One time when Elliott was playing a version of Don’t Think Twice, Dylan was in the audience and stood up and said: "I relinquish it to you, Jack!
Music from Bob Dylan

Karen Dalton

Bob Dylan
Musician
Karen Dalton is my favourite singer. Karen had a voice like Billie Holiday’s and played the guitar like Jimmy Reed and went all the way with it.
Music from Bob Dylan

Steve Cropper

Bob Dylan
Musician
I've always dug Steve Cropper... his guitar playing. Ever since the first Booker T. record. I heard that back in the Midwest. Yeah, everybody was playing like him.
Music from Bob Dylan

Joe South

Bob Dylan
Musician
I love Joe South's records. He he was quiet. He didn't say too much. I always did like him, though.
Music from Bob Dylan

Van Morrison

Bob Dylan
Musician
Tupelo Honey' has always existed and that Morrison was merely the vessel and the earthly vehicle for it.
People from Bob Dylan

Jacques-Louis David

Bob Dylan
Musician
I like Jacques-Louis David a lot, too, although he was a propagandist painter. David’s the artist who did the emblematic painting of ‘Napoleon at the Saint-Bernard Pass’ and ‘The Death of Marat.'”
People from Bob Dylan

Caravaggio

Bob Dylan
Musician
Caravaggio’s the other one. I’d probably go a hundred miles for a chance to see a Caravaggio painting or a Bernini sculpture. You know who I like a lot is [J.M.W.] Turner, the English painter. Art is artillery. And those guys, especially Caravaggio and Rembrandt, used it in its most effective manner. After seeing their work, I’m not even so sure how I feel about Picasso, to tell you the truth
People from Bob Dylan

Rembrandt

Bob Dylan
Musician
But this guy here, from this town, Rembrandt, is one of my two favorite painters. I like his work because it’s rough, crude and beautiful.