The MGM Effect: How a Hollywood Studio Changed the World

Lyons: Globe Pequot. Aug. 2022. 288p. ISBN 9781493060542. $45. FILM
Hollywood has been called the “dream factory,” and movie studios are, of course, businesses. What sets Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer apart is its presence in a wide array of fields other than the motion picture industry. Although it no longer dominates that industry as it once did, MGM is also involved in a number of other ventures including hotels and casinos, theme parks and attractions, music publishing, and much more. Bingen (MGM: Hollywood’s Greatest Backlot) begins with a corporate history of MGM and its growth and later decline. He moves on to an examination of “MGM’s place in the larger world, at how the studio has been portrayed on film (by itself and other studios), on television, in books, comics, songs, parody and prose.” There is also a lively look at MGM’s branding outside of Hollywood, illustrating Bingen’s thesis that “it was never just about the movies.” The whole production is topped off with a bibliography that incorporates books, articles, interviews, and websites.
VERDICT This unique blend of popular and corporate cultural history will interest a variety of readers, from business students to movie mavens.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing