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$12.21 $11.97 list($17.95)
161. Wanderer
list($27.95)
162. Images : My Life in Film
$14.96 $13.32 list($22.00)
163. This is Orson Welles
list($29.97)
164. Frank Sinatra: An American Legend
$14.93 $14.65 list($21.95)
165. Bono: His Life, Music, and Passions
$13.60 $9.99 list($20.00)
166. Harpo Speaks!
$20.96 $2.23 list($29.95)
167. Elia Kazan: A Life
$15.61 $14.73 list($22.95)
168. My Story
$8.96 $6.45 list($9.95)
169. Doris Day
list($14.00)
170. Double Lives, Second Chances :
$34.00 $18.75 list($50.00)
171. Judy Garland: A Portrait in Art
$25.95 $17.04
172. Fifty Contemporary Choreographers
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173. The Hollywood Book of Death :
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174. Freak: A Semi-Demi-Quasi-Pseudo
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175. Rotten: No Irish, No Blacks, No
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176. The F Word: How to Survive Your
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177. Afterglow: A Last Conversation
$4.86 list($23.00)
178. I Ain't Scared of You: Bernie
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179. The 100 Greatest Stars of All
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180. Print the Legend : The Life and

161. Wanderer
by Sterling Hayden
list price: $17.95
our price: $12.21
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1574090488
Catlog: Book (1998-03-01)
Publisher: Sheridan House
Sales Rank: 83431
Average Customer Review: 4.75 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Since its publication in 1963, Sterling Hayden's autobiography, Wanderer, has been surrounded by controversy.The author was at the peak of his earning power as a movie star when he suddenlt quit.He walked out on Hollywood, walked out of a shattered marriage, defied the courts, broke as an outlaw, set sail with his four children in the schooner Wanderer-bound for the South Seas.His attempt to escape launched his autobiography.It is the candid, sometimes painfully revealing confession of a man who scrutinized his every self-defeat and self-betrayal in the unblinking light of conscience. ... Read more

Reviews (12)

5-0 out of 5 stars "Wanderer"'s luminous insight and top notch, muscular prose
Despite being marketed as a maritime book, "Wanderer" is as much a description of one man's inner wanderings as it is a travelogue of Hayden's travel to Tahiti.Throughout, Hayden comes off as a resolute man of principle and insight.I have read the book three times and always glean something new from it. Highly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars "Wanderer" - the title says it all
I genuinely enjoyed this book. It is an unapologetic autobiography by a complex and sensitive person. I picked it up because I enjoyed Sterling Hayden as an actor, I put it down respecting him as a human. In my opinion, he is not telling his story because he is looking for approval or justification, he is writing the truth about himself, as he perceives it, as an exercise in self-understanding. Enough said, I will not continue to presume to speak for someone who speaks so eloquently for himself.

4-0 out of 5 stars Embarrassingly Good
I bought my copy of "The Wanderer" when it was first published in 1964, because Sterling Hayden was one of my favorite actors. I especially enjoyed his work in The Asphalt Jungle, Johnny Guitar, The Killing, Suddenly, and Terror in a Texas Town, among others. Now, 40 years later I have decided to reread the book, and I forgot how good it was. The central theme of the book is Hayden's escape from Hollywood, with his young children in tow, on the schooner for which the book is named. He made this voyage to the south seas against orders of the court, who considered it too dangerous for the children. As he tells of this less than idyllic voyage, he intersperses fragments of his life, concentrating mostly on his late teens and twenties when he was a working seaman. He is very stylistic in his writing, and sometimes his switching from first to third person narrative is quite jarring, but the effect is emotionally charging. As he ages into his thirties and beyond, Sterling finds his life falling apart. He becomes a Hollywood heart throb and detests his work and lifestyle. He becomes a Communist for a few months, but never really gets with the program, and to save his hated career, he goes before the HUAC and bares his soul and names names, an action he quickly and forever regretted. He seesaws between impotency and affairs, he can't communicate with the women he loves, he struggles with no notable success with psychotherapy, he finds his life adrift with no anchor in sight. All of these travails he lays out with such frankness, I felt embarassed for him. Hayden holds nothing back as he displays his warts and finds no joy in his life, except with his children. Does he simply settle, or does he come to some kind of compromise he can live with? I hope it's the latter, because after all his trials he deserves it. But I feel it is the former. Yet, shortly after the book is completed, he films one of his most important roles as Jack Ripper in "Dr. Strangelove." I won't wait 40 years to read this book again.

5-0 out of 5 stars Yep, Spike Africa is my grandfather
Each page of this book is a piece of my family history. Spike was my grandfather. If you like a good sea tale, this is the book fo ryou.

4-0 out of 5 stars A frustrated man relates
This story is a bit of a autobiography. At times it jumps around in an attempt to describe several parallel thoughts but it gets a bit confusing. It serves well as a "period piece" of sorts revealing the social and cultural elements of the author's youth and early adulthood. The story has less to do with sailing and more to do with the author's search for himself. Interesting and fairly well developed story line. Sometimes I got the feeling that this book was some kind of catharsis for the author in order to make sense of his unorthadox life. He battles against a world with order and goals that values expensive houses and big retirement accounts at the expense of enriched experiences. ... Read more


162. Images : My Life in Film
by Ingmar Bergman
list price: $27.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1559701862
Catlog: Book (1994-01-27)
Publisher: Arcade Publishing
Sales Rank: 354153
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Help for understanding Bergman
I took an Ingmar Bergman class, and I therefore had to watch a lot of Bergman films as well as analyze and write about them. Many of Bergman films as many know are sometimes very hard to understand. However this book cleared up so many things for me in the films. The fact the book is mostly Bergman commenting on his own films is great, so you don't have someone else trying to interpret someone else's mind. I you need or want to better understand and enjoy Bergman's works, get this book!! ... Read more


163. This is Orson Welles
by Orson Welles, Peter Bogdanovich, Jonathan Rosenbaum
list price: $22.00
our price: $14.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 030680834X
Catlog: Book (1998-04-01)
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Sales Rank: 47970
Average Customer Review: 4.64 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars Rosebud Reigns Supreme in Filmdom
As one who had just completed a viewing of Ciitzen Kane on DVD
(featuring the excellent audio commentary on the film by Roger Ebert & Rudy Behlmer) I turned to Frank Brady's excellent biography.This is Orson Welles completes my examination of this giant of film directorship. Over several years and in many locals the Falstaffian Welles shares his thoughts on film, his own movies and life with his devoted student Peter Bogdonovich
(himself a talented director best known for "The Last Picture Show'). If you want to know what Welles really thinks and believes this book is the Rosetta Stone for your investigation!
As Truffaut was able to discuss his life and films with Sir Alfred Hitchcock so does Peter B. do the same thing for Welles.
After all the reading and studying of Welles the man emerges as a titanic force of nature whose undisciplined genius is a wonder to behold. Any fan of Welles or Cinema should add this excellent book to your library. Well Recommended!

5-0 out of 5 stars Intimate Conversations w/ the Master by an Intelligent Fan
There is not better way to get a sense of who Orson Welles was and what his take on the various happenings of his career was, than via this set of recordings. Yes, the quality is not always great -- but you get to hear Orson telling the driver where to turn, as he and Peter chat in the back seat, or Orson asking the waiter a question, in the middle of their conversation. Of course, that also means you get some road noise in the background, or the sounds of various restuarants.

The major drawback is that for those that are unfamiliar with Orson's films, the conversation may be a little hard to follow at times. And, more importantly, there were MANY more hours of recordings made and used for the printed version of these interviews.... and all we get are a few hours of the prime material.

Come on, Peter: Release the whole shebang. Of, if that can't be done because of the economics of it, do the scholarly community a favor and place it online to that people can listen to it over the internet! (I'll help!)

5-0 out of 5 stars Oh, Orson... you glorious self-promoter...
has a very distinct voice. It has the voice of Orson himself.

Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of the book was the voyeuristic personal insight I was able to get from Welles and-despite his relatively passive role of interviewer-Bogdonovich as well. In this sense, is quite unlike the other required texts, and I do not read too much into the title of "author" that is loftily bestowed upon Bogdonovich and Welles. Through a brief surface comparison between this book and several other texts on Welles, it's clear that there is a great difference between a removed, historical opinion and a defensive individual discussing his own life. Although much could be said about Welles' misleading-albeit thoroughly entertaining-statements, I cannot fault a man for being unable to have sound perspective on his own affairs. I can only read the book as a historical text, but Welles was being asked questions about his life, and I cannot fault him for his oft-grandiose replies. The sheer nature of an interview such as this places an enormous amount of attention on Welles, so I can only smile pleasantly at his recurring ego, wondering if I could be any more impartial or less boastful in his place.

Back to the question of authorship though.

While I readily disregard comparisons between and, say, Thomson's due to their drastic differences in intent, tone and content, the strong yet shadowy hand of the omnipotent editor is ever present in all forms of biographical text. Cut this, change that, add this, move that. A book like Thomson's may greatly benefit from such professional revision, but in the cases of I felt as though the authorship accreditation was misplaced. "Edited by Jonathan Rosenbaum" should have graced the cover, replacing the names of Welles and Bogdonovich. Much like any documentary invariably guides an audience along a certain path, Rosenbaum has reconstructed the interviews amidst other such historical documentation in a very calculated and meticulous fashion. In this sense then there is no author at all, and I find it very difficult to discuss the book as a biography written by anyone.

In truth, this may be one of the worst biography's one could possibly pick up if they wanted to learn more about Welles and his life, and I doubt I would call it a biography at all. As required course reading, I am wholly appreciative that I was given the chance to "hear" the words of Orson Welles as he spoke of his own creations, idly gossiping about other actors and filmmakers. Is it all truth? No, it is laughably biased, but it is the bias of Orson Welles, and definitely a very unique variation on accepted truth. If I can trust that Rosenbaum left the integrity intact, then Welles' half-truths are just as important to understanding the man than commonly accepted "whole-truths" by some biographer.

Whereas can never stand on its own as an investigative biography of the filmmaker's life, it remains as the text that helped me to understand the man behind the myth above all others.

5-0 out of 5 stars Orson Welles: The Man and his Movies, Larger Than Life
I commend to the book above, an interview with Peter Bogdanovich.
Although I'm not a huge fan of the latter's movies (with the exception of "Paper Moon," which I loved ever since it came out when I was eight, and fell in love with tomboy Tatum O'Neill forthrightly), I have begun reading about half of this book over the past few days, and find it better than my previous favourite, the Hitchcock/Truffaut book. Of course, much favoured above Wilder/Crowe, namely because of Crowe's incessant name dropping of "Jerry Maguire" and "Tom Cruise" every other irritating sentence, which prevented the reader from finding out what
Wilder had on *his* mind.

What impresses me about the Welles/Bogdanovich volume is the raucous sense of humour Welles brings to the conversation, always as lively and as larger-than-life as Welles was. Also, Bogdanovich has laced the book with pertinent interviews, articles, anecdotes that elucidate certain points of the text, as well as Welles' lines cut from "Magnificent Ambersons" and the long memorandum he wrote to Universal studio chiefs and cc'd to Chuck Heston, trying to save what I consider his masterwork,
"Touch of Evil" from falling prey to overzealous editing by indifferent studio hacks.

But most of all, I am touched that when all the world was dumping on Welles, when he was being derided as a has-been and a spendthrift, that up-and-coming director Bogdanovich gave him his friendship and accorded him the respect he was so shamefully denied. Even Pauline Kael couldn't resist savaging Welles, and she wrote a particularly nasty and libelous article that Welles didn't write any of the screenplay to "Citizen Kane."

Of all Hollywood's sins (and I retain in memory a cross-indexed catalogue of them), the fact that even when Welles started getting "lifetime achievement" accolades, he still couldn't get any financing for his movie projects, on which he worked until his last days, leaves the bitterest taste in my mouth. There must be certain people destined to the lowest rungs of hell -- or at least purgatory -- for creating a world in which Orson Welles' last paid acting role was as the voice of the evil planet in a "Transformers" movie.

4-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating for the casual and serious buffs
I received this book as a gift recently, and I got a lot out of it, despite the fact that I am not a Kane-ologist. Welles is revealed as a man who cared about his craft, and it details the inside story of many of his films, including the bastardization of the Magnificent Ambersons. As a director, Bogdanovich speaks the language, and does well to coax the reticent Welles to open up about various moments in his checkered career. Again, the serious film buffs get the most out of this book, but as a more than casual movie watcher I have read and re-read this book as I've discovered more of Orson's work. ... Read more


164. Frank Sinatra: An American Legend
by Nancy Sinatra
list price: $29.97
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1575441152
Catlog: Book (1998-06-01)
Publisher: Stoddart
Sales Rank: 48513
Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

He had many names: Ol' Blue Eyes, the Chairman of the Board, the Sultan of Swoon, the Voice.Ultimately, we will all remember Frank Sinatra as the World's Greatest Entertainer.The Voice lives on in this commemorative pictorial tribute to the life and 50-year career of the man who changed the face of music and movies from a humble beginning in Hoboken, New Jersey to his death on May 14, 1998 at age 82.In addition to being written by Nancy Sinatra, Frank's first-born daughter, this is the ONLY book done with the full cooperation of the Sinatra family.Reviewers rave "priceless," "a visual knockout," "a must-have for any Sinatra fan."Rare or previously unpublished photos and dozens of private stories told by his most intimate friends separate myth from the real deal and make this an extremely revealing--and truly poignant--testament to the legend who did it his way.Also features a complete discography and filmography. ... Read more

Reviews (10)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent portrait of the 'real' Sinatra, 'warts and all' .
Bernard Barton (BBarton@worldnet.att.net) An excellent portrait by Frank's beloved daughter Nancy;( A bit of trivia, in honor of Nancy, Phil Silvers of Sgt. Bilko fame wrote a song in Nancy's honor called 'Nancy'. One of the best lines in the song is "Picture A Tomboy In Lace, That's Nancy, with the laughing face"; which Frank performed and recorded several times in his career.) My uncle Ben Barton was partners with Frank in a music publishing venture. I met Frank several times. My uncle and I had many conversations over the years about Mr. Sinatra. Nancy presents an accurate, compelling portrait of an American Idol. Nancy does, of course project her Fathers views on how Frank was treated over the years by the congress and particularly the "media". But she also acknowledges Franks personality traits that serve as a counterpoint or explanation of why certain elements of the United States Congress and the media have treated Frank over the years. An excellent value for such a detailed, well illustrated book full of family pictures that we generally never get to see of one so famous as Frank Sinatra. A solid 9 out of ten.

5-0 out of 5 stars Everything you want to know about Frank is in this Book
I had to get this book after seeing how low the price came down.The original price was 40 dollars. Nancy Sinatra's book on her Father has everything in here.I couldn't believe Frank weighted 13and a half pounds when he was born on December 12,1915.The Doctor ripped and scarred his ear,check,and neck,plus puncturing his eardrum.Frank wasn't breathing,so his grandmother Rose held the baby under cold running water until he gasped his first breath and cried.This book is like a Diary.It goes from year to year,sometimes month to month.All of Franks movies,records,concerts,TV shows,songs,and the name of the songwriters are in here,plus hundreds of pictures,starting with Frank's baby photo, ending with a touching family photo taken in 1996.There's a wonderfull picture of Marilyn Monroe taken with Dean Martin sitting ringside at the Sands..All of the stars are in here,and family pictures we've never seen before.If you are a Frank Sinatra fan,you have to get this Book.Its huge,and the pictures are fantastic.

4-0 out of 5 stars The ideal family album
No wonder this book is so thick- it's filled with numerous photos of Frank Sinatra, his family, and friends over the years. I love looking at these pics, and so will any other Sinatra fan. There is detailed info throughout the book as well. This is one worth having in your collection.

5-0 out of 5 stars Sinatra-Viewed Naked & Still Beautiful
Here is Sinatra stripped of everything who leaves me knowing he has deserved my love and admiration all these years. With Sinatra, he drove himself through life going after whatever he wanted and risking the consequences. We get to look at his ups and downs and his prides and his falls. We see him suffer at love and sing about it. We see him finally, after all the aborted tries, finally sink himself into a relationship with his last wife that kept him happy until he died.

Life for Sinatra was all or nothing at all and he did life his way and fell into lots of tender traps and led some into his own tender traps, like one famous movie star I will let you discover on your own.

What so special about Nancy's book is that she is amazingly organized and objective in her account of her father's life. And the CD, well the CD is everything. You get to hear Sinatra on Sinatra, unabashed.

Everyone on the planet needs to buy and read this book to learn what life can be when you go for it all every day!

Kudos to Nancy for a biography well, well done.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Review
This book has excellent pictures with the most vital information for a biography project. A great buy and great read for interested fans of Ol' Blue Eyes. ... Read more


165. Bono: His Life, Music, and Passions
by Laura Jackson
list price: $21.95
our price: $14.93
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0806525142
Catlog: Book (2003-02-01)
Publisher: Citadel Press
Sales Rank: 67686
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Objective Biography
For any fan, the biography of their idol is usually found wanting. As a U2 fan and Bono enthusiast, it's difficult for me to give a good review on a biography of Bono simply because it's irrelevant for me to own a biography on Bono. For the obsessive fan, there's rarely any new information that i haven't already heard; also, biography's on living people are already hard to judge simply because they're obsolete the day they're released.

All of that aside, this book was a great addition to my U2 collection. Jackson presents a well-rounded look at the rock star's life, focussing mostly on his social work. Of course, if i had written this book it would have been gushing with admiration and fan-boy emulation. the fact that it's not proves that it's a superior, well-written account written for anybody on the reader spectrum, long-time fans and non-fans alike.

My only complaint is the lack of focus on Bono's spiritual side. This book almost gives the impression that Bono's endeavors are purely socially and politically motivated, almost without any transcendent consideration. Of course, enough has been written and discusssed about Bono's spirituality, so perhaps a fresh take on his life story thus far is something fans can use. However, for a social and spiritual balance, i recommend reading Walk On: The Spiritual Journey of U2, although that succumbs to several of the inherent problems with fan biographies. ... Read more


166. Harpo Speaks!
by Harpo Marx, Rowland Barber
list price: $20.00
our price: $13.60
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0879100362
Catlog: Book (1985-06-01)
Publisher: Limelight Editions
Sales Rank: 28232
Average Customer Review: 4.85 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

To Marx Brothers fans who have yet to read this book: Put it off as long as you can, because once you are finished, you will wish you could read it again for the first time. Harpo's life was interesting in itself, but it also frequently intersected with the lives of other fascinating people, most notably his own brothers and drama critic Alexander Woolcott. Marx also was part of the legendary Algonquin Round Table; he's got plenty to say about that. Wait'll you hear about what it means to "throw a Gookie." You'll never be able to watch a Marx Brothers movie again without looking for the Gookie! ... Read more

Reviews (60)

5-0 out of 5 stars A wonderful read
I lost a lot of sleep the week I was reading this. I would decide to read a chapter before turning out the light. Three hours, and several chapters later I would force myself to put it down so I would at least get a little sleep before work. The writing is wonderful. It is a collaboration with Roland Barber, but the voice feels like Harpo throughout. The stories of his early days on the road with his brothers- their mother the dynamo keeping them at it- are fascinating to read. He had amazing, interesting friends, the Round Table folks, George Burns. His later family life is terrific to read about. It is a deep book, and a beautiful book. Funny, and touching without being smarmy. A great, great book.

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the best books I've read by anyone on any subject.
_Harpo Speaks_ is deffinitely one of the best books I have ever read by anyone, anywhere, not just among books about the Marx Brothers, but among books on any subject. Even though it was several hundreds of pages long, I wanted several hundred more pages when I got to the end. It was so totally engrosing. Harpo seems to have an almost inexhaustable supply of hilarious true stories. I wonder why more of these hysterically funny tales and practical jokes were not used in Marx Brothers movies. There are, it must be said, also several serious passages -- some heartbreaking, some suspenseful, some inspirational. There are parts of this book which read like a wonderful manual on how to have a great marriage and adopt and raise four great kids, which is exactly what Harpo and Susan did. Harpo was an extremely interesting person who surrounded himself with many extremely interesting friends. Harp has many lessons to teach on how to get the most out of every moment, and out of life. This book makes you wish you had met Harpo; it makes you wish you had been one of his friends. He shares so much in this book that is personal that reading it makes you feel almost as if you are one of his friends. Rowland Barber helped Harp get his great story across in a fairly orderly manner, but the content of the book is all from Harpo's fascinating mind, big heart, and his numerous, diverse, extaordinary experiences. This book is about Harp's and his brothers' career(s) in show business, but it is about so much more than that; there are amazing true stories about poverty & affluence, tough urban street life, Vaudville, Broadway, Hollywood, international espionage, love, family, friendship, life & death, crime & punishment, failure & success, anti-Semitism, and more. There are also some wonderful photographs.

5-0 out of 5 stars An Unsung Classic
This book is a true must-read for anyone, Marxist or not. Full of good humor, incredible experiences, an amazing childhood, and life in vaudeville, its message is one of warmth and hilarity. I first read it at 18 years of age, and still revisit its pages twelve years later. I hope that's always the case, for each time, I find something new.

As you read through this book, you'll find yourself thinking, "There just aren't people like this guy anymore" - Harpo Marx was the cheerful, resourceful product of turn-of-the-century New York, and vaudeville, at that. His childhood of scrapping out a survival of relative destitution (the jobs he took are hilarious, and fascinating, to read about), in a loving, albeit quirky, family couldn't be found in fiction - it's too wacky to have been invented. And his introduction to life on the stage - well, you'll have to read for yourself.

Harpo Marx's life seems never to have had a dull moment - from a hugely successful life on stage and screen, to his intimate friendships with members of the legendary Algonquin Round Table (the croquet fixation among those folks is a book in itself) - it's practically a life worthy of fairytale status. His stories about Alexander Woollcott are absolutely hysterical, and a great treat by themselves. And don't even get me started on the section about Oscar Levant - just thinking about it makes me laugh out loud. Finally, we read about Harpo's marriage to Susan Fleming, and their adoption of five children. The warmth and humanity that were such a huge part of Harpo can be summed up by the reason he chose to adopt five children - so that when he came home every day, there would be a face in each window to greet him. What a great, great man.

My review only skims the surface of this great book's content - it's a fascinating read, and will definitely open your eyes to a new way of seeing the world. It's worth every penny, and chances are you'll want to hold onto your copy for a good, long time. I sure have.

5-0 out of 5 stars How could you NOT love this man?!!!
After reading this book, all I can say is..........AMAZING!!! Harpo led such an unbelieveable life, and I feel so gratified that I could share in it by reading his life story. I was hooked from the first page, and I just couldn't put it down. This man went through so much adversity in his childhood, but he was neither bitter nor cynical about it. He just accepted whatever life threw at him, and we are all the better for it. He has (or should I say had) a magnificant way of telling a story. I loved reading about the early days and his adventures of being "Exapno Mapcase" when he was in Russia. And the way he told the story of how his wife Susan courted him. She sounded like a great lady. Also, how Harpo and Susan told the "The Story" to their kids about how they were adopted. Harpo truly was a gentle man, and I for one, am glad he was able to achieve peace and serenity in his life. His story is uplifting, and I really and truly wish I could have met this sweet, funny, and adorable man. Highly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars "...and in conclusion"
That line use to crack Harpo up! This book is like sitting down and hearing your best friend tell you the story of his life, and WHAT a life! Harpo lived through the toughest of times full of bigotry, proverty and a world torn by war, yet the love of his family and friends provided him a safe haven that few people ever experience. Harpo's outlook on life, his gentle nature and true love of people served him well. This book takes you to Harpo's world and seats you at the Algonquin Round Table for a 10 year lunch with some of the most famous people of the 20's and 30's. It's a trip back in time and an insider's veiw of the world of vaudeville and life on the road. All of this history is told with warmth and humor that makes you want to read it over and over. I found this book in the 1970's and I've read it many times. I have two copies, one a well worn paperback and the other a treasured first edition with a perfect book jacket! I've spent many hours in Harpo's company and with each time the telling just gets better. In these pages you'll find a man who was a success at his craft, his family and with his friendships. I think his greatest acomplisment was the family he and Susan created with four adopted children late in life and "The Story" about how each child came into the family is too wonderful to be missed. The greatest gift he had was himself and he gave it generously to everyone he met. And though this book he shares himself with you. ... Read more


167. Elia Kazan: A Life
by Elia Kazan
list price: $29.95
our price: $20.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0306808048
Catlog: Book (1997-10-01)
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Sales Rank: 162497
Average Customer Review: 4.89 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

One of the most important theater autobiographies of the 1980s, Elia Kazan: A Life, has finally been released in paperback. The extra decade adds to the book's poignancy and its value: a history of backstage personalities and politics in the 20th century is included in this release. Elia Kazan was a founding member of the Group Theatre, was among those shouting "Strike! Strike!" on the legendary opening night of Waiting for Lefty, directed the two greatest Broadway dramas ever--Death of the Salesman and A Streetcar Named Desire--and earned countless other credits, but he also played a flawed role in the greatest real-life moral drama of his era: the McCarthy Communist witch hunts of the 1950s. Kazan offered names to the House Un-American Activities Committee. He cut his conscience to fit the fashion of the time, and his conscience continues to bleed. Though this book is framed, like so much of Kazan's best stage and film work, as a lifelong search for man's proper relationship to society, the book serves as a massive explanation and apologia for Kazan's one monumental lapse. He lived his life intensely, a life in which a single word could transform you, where a misdeed might be "never forgotten or forgiven." Such were the times, and Kazan captures them with appropriate drama. ... Read more

Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars Elia Kazan--What A Life!!!
Before I read this book, I knew a little about Elia Kazan. For example, I knew that he had been a successful Hollywood film director in the late forties and early fifties. Indeed, I had seen some of his films: East Of Eden, in particular, came to mind. I had also read somewhere that he had also been a prominent and successful theatre director on Broadway; that he had given the likes of Marlon Brando and James Dean their first starts; that he was one of the influential people behind the advent of the Method Acting style; and finally, that he had been a 'friendly' witness-that means naming names, of course--at the HUAC hearings in the early fifties: what a snake, I thought!

But hey, I've now read the book, and I know the real story and the real Elia Kazan. The book is an 800+ page epic. And an epic in every sense of the word. Kazan's autobiography is a long, brooding, and fascinating recall of his eventful life. He has, as he acknowledges in the later pages, lived a variegated and full life, he has no regrets about any of it, and he realises that he has been fortunate to have led such an interesting life. And 'interesting' it certainly is. The book, though, is no glamorous odyssey of a life lived in Broadway and Hollywood; neither is it a chronicle of the great and the good of America's creative talent. Yes, there are valuable insights and vivid portraits of people like Harold Clurman, Lee Strasberg, Clifford Odets, Arthur Miller, Tennessee Williams, Marilyn Monroe, Marlon Brando and John Steinbeck. You will also meet some of Hollywood's movie moguls, particularly Darryl Zanuck at Fox. Yes, those stories are told, but all in the context of the main enterprise: the laying down for posterity of the intimate detail of the life of one of America's most celebrated creative talents of the middle of the twentieth century. Kazan unashamedly reveals his inner thoughts, his recollections, reasons, reminiscences and experiences-whether they show him in a good, bad or indifferent light. The book is brutally frank and you can only admire the author's unstinting honesty-possibly a cathartic aspect to the work aided Kazan along the way.

Remarkable for a book of this size, there is never a hint of unevenness or flagging. It's an enthralling, engrossing book from start to finish. Much of life's rich tapestry, to use the euphemistic cliché, is explored here. Kazan is clearly an astute and perceptive observer of life. Life essentially means human beings, of course, and this brings us to the essence of the book, human nature, particularly the behaviour between man and woman. Manipulation, expediency, lust, deceit, hurt, love, the passion and the platonic: it's all here in a very stark black and white. Yet still the book continually sparkles, even when the reader faces some genuinely sad and pitiful moments, particularly relating to Kazan's fiercely supportive and loyal first wife, Molly. There is no cherry-picking of 'the good times' in this book: highs and lows, triumph and disaster, they all co-exist side by side. Kazan doesn't shirk from revealing his overwhelming determination at the time to have his cake and eat it ie. a loving wife at home and a passionate mistress outside.

Apart from the inherent problems that male/female relationships spawn, if you forgive the pun, Kazan also talks extensively about his rather frustrating and unfulfilling time at college; his less-than-perfect relationship with his father; reflections on the life of a Greek immigrant family trying to make their way in the 'new world', in this case, New York; more reflections on Greeks, this time those living in another 'foreign' country, Turkey (where Kazan's parents had emigrated from), and the altered behaviour necessary to survive amongst 'the enemy'; and, of course, he describes the whys and wherefores of his 'friendly' HUAC testimony, and the subsequent vitriol directed against him as a consequence from many quarters, including so-called 'friends'; we learn of the unsavoury modus operandi of both the Communist Party in America and the HUAC authorities in the late forties and early fifties; and Kazan's single-mindedness and determination as, post-HUAC, he persevered and produced his best work as a film director; also, an interesting account of how Kazan's second wife, Barbara, and her confused but brave struggle against cancer; and so on.

The book is a courageous and brutally honest self-expose, if you like, of a man who has remained largely silent over the years. He doesn't gloss over his extra-marital activities, and the hard-heartedness and guile required on his part to maintain his passionate love for his mistress and, at the same time, his more platonic love for his first wife. This reflects the 'insoluble' (Kazan's word) nature of man's relationship with the opposite sex.

The book is beautifully-written-quality throughout--and the prose intimate, inviting and lucid. The honesty and intimacy of Kazan's words, as he describes his thoughts, feelings and rationale at the time, ensure that you live his life with him, and by the end of the book, you also feel you've been through one hell of a life.

Over a year ago, I read an excellent book called A Child Of The Century, Ben Hecht's autobiography, published in the fifties. I never thought I'd read another autobiography to match or surpass it. I have, and it's called A Life, by Elia Kazan. Waste no more time and buy this book. Alternatively borrow it or steal it, but whatever you do, read it!!

5-0 out of 5 stars An epic and personal journey of a theatrical giant
This book is perhaps one of the greatest autobiographies of the modern Theatre. Kazan pulls no punches in depicting his epic journey from Greek immigrant to one of the greatest theatre and film directors of all time. His life parallels the crucial artistic movements and conflicts of the Twentieth Century: The Group Theatre, The HUAC hearings, The height and fall of the Hollywood Studio System, the founding of the Actor's Studio, and the development of the American Theatre. Kazan, along with Arthur Miller and Tennessee Williams played a crucial role in creating a strong and vibrant American Theatre. All throughout this amazing journey are insights into the craft of acting as well as the trials and tribulations of a man struggling for personal identity. This book demands to be on the shelf of any student, practitioner or fan of the Theatre. Five out of five stars

5-0 out of 5 stars Kazan's life as written is a 20th-century masterpiece
I have read this book four times. I can't recall an autobiography of any century that is more candid, and is written with such extraordinary brio.

5-0 out of 5 stars More than politics, women seem to be Kazan's bete noire.
Kazan has written a stunningly truthful autobiography that should be read and savored. Here is "Gadge" an icon of mid-century American theatre and film spilling it out all over the page. From his unfulfilled teenaged longings for blonde American girls, to his first marriage in which he felt trapped, but stayed on and on, to the many affairs he indulged in, all are chronicled almost too graphically, but from a distinctly detached (a writer's?) point of view. One doesn't feel that he loved or even liked any of them.

But so what? Here's a man who could brilliantly direct both "Streetcar" and "Salesman" in the space of a few years and then go to Hollywood and deal successfully with the likes of Darryl Zanuck and the 20th Century Fox grind-them-out-fast film factory. The Hollywood stuff is both funny and refreshingly honest. Who else has dared to challenge the Spencer Tracy was and remains the greatest screen actor legend? And then there's the deadly little aside about Marilyn Monroe giving him a not-so-subtle look as she sat quietly beside her then mentor, Johnny Green. The sainted Tracy as an out of shape, lazy and not very dedicated actor, and the "vulnerable" Marilyn as a cunningly on-the-make tart who would have traded in her devoted agent for the famous director, given the slightest encouragement, are just two minor examples of the fascinating insights that appear on almost every page.

It's a very fat book. It had to be. Kazan was in his eighties when he wrote it and he's led an extremely full life. It was a long and winding road from the Group Theatre to that uncomfortable, halting appearance at the 1999 Academy Awards cermonies. They made him (and the latest wife) wait until almost the very end, but he made it through. And there was Nick Nolte remaining seated and staring mean and hard at this fragile old man. And there, too, was a smiling Warren Beatty rising graciously and applauding. He redeemed himself that night. I'm sure the old man noticed.

4-0 out of 5 stars Mostly Interesting
The first of the book is alittle slow. The end is depressing. Between the two I found this book very interesting about Mr. Kazan's career in the theatre and movies. He knew many big names, and worked with alot of them. I rented the video "On the Waterfront," for the first time while reading this book. Mr. Kazan said "Waterfront" was his movie, his statement on how he felt about testifying before the Un-American Activities Committee in Washington, D.C. Personally, I applaud Mr. Kazan for his courage in naming names. Communism was a real threat to our country. Elia Kazan should know. He was one of them at one time. ... Read more


168. My Story
by Marilyn Monroe
list price: $22.95
our price: $15.61
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0815411022
Catlog: Book (2000-10)
Publisher: Cooper Square Publishers
Sales Rank: 76198
Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Little known and long unavailable, this autobiography, written by actress and starlet Marilyn Monroe (1926-1962), describes her early adolescence, her rise in the film industry from bit player to celebrity, and her marriage to Joe DiMaggio. ... Read more

Reviews (10)

4-0 out of 5 stars a marilyn fan necessity
Whether you believe that Marilyn herself or friend Ben Hecht wrote this book, it is a must-own for any collector. With short, charming chapters that you can almost hear being whispered to you in Marilyn's little girl voice, the book truly captures her persona. How awful to get to the end, knowing her troubles are barely beginning!

4-0 out of 5 stars "My Story" Based on Interviews with Marilyn
"My Story" has generated controversy since its publication in
1974. After perusing the above reviews, it appears to continue this legacy. Milton Greene, Marilyn's former vice president of Marilyn Monroe Productions, claimed to have the original manuscript allegedly typed by Marilyn. Greene published it in hardcover for the first time twelve years after Marilyn's death. However, the roots of this project stemmed from serialized newspaper articles for London's The Empire News in 1954. Supposedly, the writing was ghosted by Ben Hecht as told to him by Marilyn in interviews. It reads as if Marilyn was speaking and is obviously edited to resemble an autobiographical account. Of course, Marilyn was given the byline in the newspaper. Marilyn's account of childhood sexual abuse is harrowing. When Marilyn's estate was auctioned by Christie's in NYC in 1999, excerpts from this book were used to illustrate and authenticate her white baby grand piano, a gift from her mother in childhood.
Gary Vitacco-Robles, author of "Cursum Perficio: Marilyn Monroe's Brentwood Hacienda

5-0 out of 5 stars Great
THis book shows both facts and feelings of marilyn. She wasnt a whore she was a normal girl who just wanted to be great. this book it awesome!

5-0 out of 5 stars great!
this book was the most truthful of all books i have read about marilyn. it isn't about who everone thinks she is or perseives her to be, this is marilyn as she really is, the way she see's herself. anyone who thinks otherwise is probably just freaked out by how different marilyn is from her public persona. this book is wonderful!

1-0 out of 5 stars Much massaged, tweaked "autobiography"
To clear up any confusion, this book is by no means an autobiography. It was written around 1953-4 and wasn't published until 1974. Many, many changes had been made since Ben Hecht wrote the draft to be published in the fifties, although it never was. There are many bizarre lines in the book, and Marilyn miraculously predicts she will wind up dead with a bottle of pills in her hand. While it is true she always believed she would die young (a la Jean Harlow) this is just a little too absurd. In fact, the whole book is absurd. It's not really worth reading at all. Of course, if you're like me and collect any book if it's Marilyn, it's an ok addition to your collection, just not one I would pull out very often. ... Read more


169. Doris Day
by Eric Braun
list price: $9.95
our price: $8.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0752817159
Catlog: Book (2004-04-01)
Publisher: Orion Publishing Group, Ltd.
Sales Rank: 43776
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Doris Day is almost always portrayed as the sunny, squeaky-clean girl next door. This wholesome image kept her at the top for twenty-four years and thirty-nine films.But behind the effervescent, ever-cheerful image that Doris Day portrayed through dozens of classic Hollywood movies was an extraordinary story of private pain. Her dazzling smile hid a tormented personal life that included four marriages, and a terrifying accident that nearly ended her life. And yet for generations of movie-goers Doris Day remained the embodiment of innocent beauty and apple-pie homeliness, and even today she exerts a powerful fascination for millions of fans around the world. ... Read more

Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars A golden glow
Erik Braun's book is a labor of love, and he has actually spent some time with the retired screen goddess. He gives us priceless glimpses of the films that never got made, as well as a knowing eye at the ones that did. For an Englishman, his takes on US pop culture are well-researched and never get in the way of his critical insights.

His comments on Marty Melcher, the bete noire of the Day story, are remarkably even-tempered, and his take on Day's practice of Christian Science ditto. He's got an opinion on everything, but he's agreeable enough to make you wish the book was twice as long as it is.

The comical thing is that in every paragraph, Braun somehow makes a British connection whenever possible; sometimes it seems like he's pulling them out of his arse as he goes along. Who would have guessed that Doris, the all-American girl, had less than six degrees of separation to so many UK institutions? She starred with British born Cary Grant in THAT TOUCH OF MINK, Rex Harrison in MIDNIGHT LACE and with Richard Harris in CAPRICE. (Harris, mysteriously, refused to speak to Braun without a signed release from Doris Day.) The sequences of the Hitchcock film, THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH, that were filmed in London, get special attention here. Erix Braun compares Doris Day to the British musical comedy stars Jessie Matthews, Gracie Fields and Gertrude Lawrence. And a host of character actors from England made appearances in Doris' films, from Terry-Thomas to Reginald Gardiner.

Who was the co-star with whom Doris later fell in love and had an affair during her TV years? In her own memoir Doris refused to identify him, for he was a married man then. Braun preserves his anonymity, though a fancy bit of writing suggests, then denies, that he is thinking of Kirk Douglas for the part. I wonder!

5-0 out of 5 stars Review of Updated Version
Having already got an older edition of this biography, I wondered what reason there would be in getting this 2004 revised and updated version for her 80th birthday. Well, there is reason. It does include a worthy amount of new things (among them, some cool "previously unreleased" photos by Leo Fuchs) and it's worth picking up for the "extra" content, not in previous editions. Of course, if you never had an older edition before, then that's all the more reason for you to buy it.

This book by British writer, Eric Braun, was originally a "Top 10" bestselling biography, and it has been well written, researched, and is a good, accurate look at the life of screen legend, Doris Day, who was by far the greatest female talent in the movies, and music business.

However, for us more dedicated fans, who have seen all 39 of her movies, a good number of times over, you might find that the author goes a little "over-the-top" on detailing out the plotlines of all her movies. His interesting opinions though, and "behind-the-scenes" info, are all the more welcome. For those of you who have not seen all of her movies though, it may be more usefull to you, and more welcome, than it is to me (and some others).

At the end of the book, it does include complete listings of her filmography, with small information towards them. A discography, TV-Show appearances, and so on. That load of information that's been compiled at the end alone, is actually a good little bit to take a look at and "browse" through.

This book is a "must-have" for Doris Day fans, and, if one hasn't already picked up the official biography, "Doris Day: Her Own Story" (which is indeed, long out-of-print now) then you will want to aswell. Although I suggest you give Micheal Freedland's "The Illustrated Biography" a miss (which I suggest more for completists only). So pick up this new edition, which no doubt you won't be disappointed in.

5-0 out of 5 stars Revised and updated 2004 edition...
In the year of Doris's 80th birthday, Orion Publishing in the UK revise and update their bestselling biography by British writer, Eric Braun.

The book is an informative and honest account of the lady who can only be described as a showbiz legend! Expect NO tabloid twists, just a good read with some stunning new b/w shots from the 1960s, a photo of Grandma Doris in the new millennium and detailed listings of her music, movies and awards.

This book is a faithful companion for anyone who admires Doris, one of the main reasons why I got involved in revising this edition in time for her epic 80th!

If you haven't yet bought this book I'd wholeheartedly recommend it. If you have a previous edition this one knocks spots of those before - as it contains lots of new content. In the absense of her official biography (Doris Day: Her Own Story), which is out of print, this one is the BEST on the market! ... Read more


170. Double Lives, Second Chances : The Cinema of Krzysztof Kieslowski
by Annette Insdorf
list price: $14.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0786884746
Catlog: Book (2002-05-15)
Publisher: Miramax Books
Sales Rank: 51758
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Double Lives, Second Chances.
Kieslowski changed my life. I watched RED first, then WHITE and Finally BLUE. I've never watched anything that moved me so. So much better than anything that comes out of Hollywood( except for the occasional Shawshank). Ann Insdorf does a great job narrating the DVD--in the 'extras' section of the trilogy. Based on her performance, I bought 'Double Lives'. I enjoyed her personal observations of the master at work. I loved her book. My only complaint is I wanted moreanalysis of the Trilogy(and the Decalogue). But she gives a fantastic job on the Trilogy DVD set. She's a true scholar of the sage.

5-0 out of 5 stars Blue White Red
I have been an enormous follower and keeper of Kieslowki's work since a fateful afternoon when I stumbled upon a showing of "Blue" several years ago.This of course came to a bittersweet juncture when Kdied in 1997.Regardless, this book accurately captures the thedevelopment of this extraordinary director... and writer.Insdorffpresented some interesting insights in her writing amidst some oversights:the car in Blue was a Puegeott, not BMW, and no mentioning of"Blue's" Julie's accident interruption in court in"White".Although Kieslowki's beginnings and earlier works likehis string of documentaries and "Decalogue" are crutcial to hisfoundation as an outstandingly brilliant director as showcased in the ThreeColors trilogy, I wished more expoundment was made on the his final threeworks which is truly poetry in images. ... Read more


171. Judy Garland: A Portrait in Art & Anecdote
by John Fricke, Lorna Luft
list price: $50.00
our price: $34.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0821228366
Catlog: Book (2003-10-13)
Publisher: Bulfinch
Sales Rank: 65726
Average Customer Review: 4.54 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

In a career that spanned five decades and encompassed stardom in every medium, Judy Garland's professional achievements remain unsurpassed. Now her timeless joy comes alive in JUDY GARLAND: A PORTRAIT IN ART & ANECDOTE. Hundreds of rare and previously unpublished photographs, studio memorabilia, and personal mementos from the family archives, along with scores of anecdotes drawn from interviews with her professional colleagues, friends, family, and Judy herself, showcase her on- and off-stage "talent to amuse." Decade by decade, her incomparable accomplishments on stage, film, television, radio, and recordings are lovingly illustrated and remembered by those who knew her best. Often funny, sometimes poignant, but always fascinating, this book singularly conveys the happiness that Garland's own great and buoyantly emotional performances have brought to hundreds of millions of admirers. Anyone who ever enjoyed a Garland song will revel in this glowing, lavishly illustrated tribute. ... Read more

Reviews (37)

5-0 out of 5 stars More than just a legend...
This is the greatest new book on Judy Garland. It includes many new photographs and images never seen before. The format of the book shows Judy as performer through the decades of her life as well as showing her as the devoted mother of her three children. For those of us who grew up watching Judy on television (other than her movies), it is fascinating to see the candid shots and the behind the scenes' photos. This book is a tribute to Judy, not only as a legend, but also as a mother. Judy Garland would be very proud of this collaboration of John Fricke and Lorna Luft. I cannot think of two people more qualified or devoted to the memory of Judy Garland to present such a fascinating study of a mother and a superstar that we lost too early.

5-0 out of 5 stars C'mon Get Happy
John Fricke has really outdone himself! I got this book for a Christmas present and since then have become a HUGE Garland fan. This is a great book for any Judy fan or anyone who is interested in learning more about her. It doesnt go way into her life and talk about one subject for 10 pages. It shows you a more personal side of Judy Garland, coming from those who loved her the most. There are alot of good stories, many told by Margret Whiting,the false teeth story is funny. There are quotes on what people thought of her as a entertainer and as a person. Not only are there great stories and quotes there are magnificent pictures. Pictures you cant find anywhere else. There are some great candids of Judy just throwing her head back in laughter. Very nice concert shots, that just give us a glimpse of her fabulous energy. There are even a few unretouched photos as well. Then there are the pictures of her with her kids, you can just see the love shining in her eyes. The last 10 pages of pictures and quotes are so powerful that I at least have to mention two of the pictures. The one of her rose covered coffin being carried down some street in New York, the reporters, the tons of fans that all lost some one, not just a celebrity but some one they thought of as a friend. Then there is the very last page of the entire book, an audience applauding and Judy getting ready to take a bow. Very powerful last page. This book isnt pne that is going to sit on your bookshelf and collect dust. But it is one that will be sitting on your coffe table. The one you look at almost everyday and never get tired of.

2-0 out of 5 stars Gushy
When I picked up this book at the library, the librarian said to me, "You've got the heaviest book in the library."

I replied, "It may be heavy in weight, but it won't be heavy reading." And indeed it was not. The only reason to look at this book is for the pictures, many of which I've not seen elsewhere.

The text, however, is gush, gush, gush. The author repeats himself ad nauseum and quotes only people who haven't a single word to say against the great, the fabulous, the one and only legend! It gets tiresome. Yes, Judy Garland was a great talent, but how many times do we have to hear it?

5-0 out of 5 stars Completely won over???? You will be..
This book is magic. I really felt once i had finished the book..I read it from start to finish in one sitting..that Judy Garland was clapping at the end and giving me an impish grin because I had followed her all her life.
The photos speak for themselves - the beautiful glamour shots, the fat ones, the thin ones, the ones of Judy singing, throwing her head back and laughing, reaching out to people, crying (but not really)the close ups of her and her freckles and puffy eyes..toto, Lorna, Joey, Liza.. Ranse Ranson..whoever you are, you did a wonderful job. A beautiful presentation.

The text summarises each decade of Judy's life and career so don't expect too much indepth analysis here. But everything is accurate to my knowledge, and Judy's sense of humour and the ironical come across loud and clear. Some may find it a bit too gushy..but come on..this is written by a huge fan so as well as historian John Fricke so what do you expect? Tabloid trash?

The quotes are fitting but I wish there were more from the entertainment world that I knew and still alive..like Elizabeth Taylor, Mickey Rooney, Liza Minelli..I mean she could say something new it's not like one had to be close to Judy have insight to her. Fricke didn't have to rehash old quotes..but it's nice to have them anyway. Even those who were extremely close to Judy sometimes could not understand her. I mean those arrangers couldn't understand why Judy never vocalised before a concert! Hello! She was saving her voice!!! She wasn't an opera singer!

Most of the quotes are gushy (like she is the greatest..etc)..and some make you mad, because they're just people's biased opinions, and some are truly lovely and what Judy would have liked to hear and read.

Lorna contributed to the foreword and it's lovely to have Judy Garland's daughter's perspective. It does remind you that Judy was a human being not a mythological legend and that she left living legacies in her children. Joey too is quoted, however he is a quiet man and does not like to speak much about his ma and I respect that. What would be interesting is when everyone is prepared to speak out about Judy once past wounds have been healed. quotes from David Rose, Sid Luft, mark herron and Mickey Deans are noticeably absent. Sid Luft is still living but he is not prepared to open the past..although he has collaborated with one Judy biography that shall be nameless. So don;t go looking for Judy's personal love life here! Her love was with her audience, and it shows. Also I think this book will contribute to vindicating Judy from some misinterpretations of her worth as a person and entertainer.

Be warned, it gets sad towards the end....

This is a fascinating book,even if you buy it for the pictures alone..it's worth the money!!!!! It will become a collectors item I think and will give pleasure for generations to come. Keep it for the treasury.

5-0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
I read all the other reviews posted here prior to purchasing this book, and was curious as to how I would respond to this book. I have read everything that has been written or done on Garland, and this far outshines all the others. This is not a tired rehashing of the same old stories. It is a loving tribute that allows Garland's genius to shine through. My partner has always patiently tolerated my love of Judy--after looking through this book, he said that he finally could see what the hubbub is all about. Now THAT's an achievement. ... Read more


172. Fifty Contemporary Choreographers
by Martha Bremser
list price: $25.95
our price: $25.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0415103649
Catlog: Book (1999-08-01)
Publisher: Routledge
Sales Rank: 181389
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Book Description

Covering today's most important modern, ballet, contemporary and post-modern choreographers in Europe and North America, this unique guide is a valuable quick reference for students and critics, dancers and general readers in love with dance.

Each entry includes a biographical section, a chronological list of works, a detailed bibliography and a critical essay. In entries on choreographers such as Richard Alston, Pina Bausch, Laurie Booth, Christopher Bruce, Jonathan Burrows, Michael Clarke, Merce Cunningham, Anna Theresa De Keersmaeker, Eiko and Koma, William Forsythe,Jiri Kylain, Mark Morris, Twyla Tharp and other leading figures, readers can easily locate each choreographer's style and influence within the development of contemporary theatre dance, and swiftly discern the essential facts in his or her career. ... Read more


173. The Hollywood Book of Death : The Bizarre, Often Sordid, Passings of More than 125 American Movie and TV Idols
by James Robert Parish
list price: $16.95
our price: $11.53
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0809222272
Catlog: Book (2001-10-29)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill
Sales Rank: 22511
Average Customer Review: 4.16 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The death of a celebrity is often as fascinating as--and sometimes more fascinating than--a star's actual life. From the grisly end of Sharon Tate at the hands of the Manson family and the mysterious demise of Bob Crane to the peaceful passings of Lucille Ball and George Burns, The Hollywood Book of Death is a captivating and appealingly packaged volume of more than 125 television and movie stars' final curtain calls.

Arranged in an encyclopedic approach by manner of death, these well-researched accounts include details of celebrities' colorful lives and unusual deaths, their funerals, and the intriguing aftermath. With more than 100 rare photographs and a special "necrology" index of more than 6,000 stars and directors, along with a section revealing where Hollywood personalities are resting in eternal sleep, this enthralling reference promises to be on every film and television buff's "Top 10" gift list.

... Read more

Reviews (25)

5-0 out of 5 stars It's About Their Lives & Deaths
For film buffs or those into the Hollywood/movie industry, or the casual observer who grew up with a television set in their home. Providing 100 years of Hollywood/LA and the actresses and actors that used to be.

As people have many ways of departing this world, the author broke chapters into the way in which they exited: natural, homicide, drugs & alcohol, puzzling (unexplained), suicide, and accidents i.e. This is not about death per se but even moreso of the life and career of these people. In addition to 125 people, hundreds of movie titles are listed. It's not gloomy or morose. One can learn more about recent and long-past actors/actresses and their works here. It's an easy informative read.

Those into movies are aware of likes of Jane Mansfield and Sal Mineo, but additional coverage into a hundred of others tie old and new Hollywood together back to the beginning of the 1900s. Strait-to-the-point insights into their professional and private lives, and street addresses of Hollywood and Los Angeles are presented where the end came for these folks. You can find where they are buried as well. From this book you can take a ride or stroll through the Hollywood area and know more of what happened and where in the past.

What became of Alfalfa from "The Little Rascals" and hundreds of others you've heard of. You can find out here.

4-0 out of 5 stars Lurid tales of the passing of the famous and not so famous
If you're interested in the lives and deaths of TV and movie celebrities, this is the book for you. It provides an account of each featured celeb's life and (of course) death no matter how tawdry either the former or latter may be. Suicides, murders, old age, disease, and every other imaginable way the Grim Reaper takes his harvest is here. One will be saddened over the suicides of Freddie Prinz and River Phoenix as well as feel pride over how a real-life cowboy and hero like Buck Jones went to his final roundup rescuing people in real life as he did so many times on film. My only recommendation is that the reader should read only a few pages at a time since the book can prove rather depressing what with seeing the often sad end of so many bright stars.

4-0 out of 5 stars Quite Good...
I picked this up on a whim while browsing in my local bookstore one day, and I am glad I made that purchase. I read one or two entries every night, so it took me a while to get through it, but it was very interesting and informative, if a bit depressing at times. It was easy to read, and I was able to read each entry quickly, which is not usually the case for most Hollywood "biographies" that I've read.

I do have one complaint with the book, however. Even though I am not usually the one to need pictures in the books I read, it would have been MUCH nicer to have included at least one photo for each of the stars here. There were several featured people that either: 1.) I did not know of or 2.) I could not recall the face of. It would have been nice to have a convenient reference of these people. Looking back, many of the entries were without pictures.

Otherwise, it was a very enjoyable read, and I highly recommend it to anyone interested in the subject.

5-0 out of 5 stars Grave Matters
Celebrities. There has always been an incredible fascination with the ins and outs of a celebrity and everything that goes with it. It's been that way for decades and decades. While some may be interested in what they do or spend, nothing is more interesting and fascinating than the tale of a star who's time has come and gone and are no longer with this. This decent sized book tells the tale of over 125 celebrities who have passed on to that big silver screen in the sky. Some big names, some you have probably never heard of before in your life. The big name stars that are featured in this book like Mary Pickford, W.C. Fields, River Phoenix, Bela Lugosi, Marlene Dietrich, Carole Lombard, and a ton of others, are always interesting to read about. But it is the people you are not familiar with that comes across as more intriguing. The book is divided into a couple of different categories dealing with the way of death. There is the first section, "Accidental Deaths", which is pretty much self explanatory. People in this section include Sonny Bono, Grace Kelly, Brandon Lee, and a dozen others. Then there is the "Alcohol And Drugs" section, where such celebs as Belushi, Barrymore, Farley, and Holden among others will be found. There is "In Obscurity", a section with lesser known performers, although Martha Raye is in here along with Clara Bow and Hedy Lamarr. This section deals with entertainrs who, well, went into obscurity. The book rounds out with "Murders", "Natural Causes", which does have a lot of people in it but does not fill up the book at all like an earlier review said. Plus, there is "Puzzling Deaths" and "Suicides". Some entertainers get a lenghty enough tribute, while some others don't. But I found each one to be appropriate to the level of star they were talking about and gave as good enough of information as there needed to be. There were definitley some doozies in here in regards to the person themself and their demise. Their is definitley bizarre and sordid stories in here as the title of the book says. While some may of died of old age or some other kind of natural cause, there is still usually enough interesting things and facts written about them that still makes it worthwhile, even when the ones that died normally, well, died normally. Plus you get fun little tall tales about people like John Barrymore. As legend has it, his body was borrowed from the morgue and taken back to Errol Flynn's house by his buddies and propped up making it look as though he didn't die. This, of course, sent Errol running out of the house. There are a few odds and ends like that here and there, and it's part of the fun that this book has between it's pages. The author, James Parrish, put together a nice and interesting book that is sure to be eaten up by any fan intrigued by the subject. I know I was.

3-0 out of 5 stars Book of Death For Dummies... ...
I found this book to be written in a very basic, generic writing
style. Much better books have been written on this subject in a
much more interesting way. No new information here I have'nt read elsewhere. This book should have been titled "Hollywood
Book of Death For Dummies" or something. I highly recommend this
book for the Hollywood graveyard beginner. Enjoy. ... Read more


174. Freak: A Semi-Demi-Quasi-Pseudo Autobiography
by John Leguizamo, John Lequizamo, David Bar Katz
list price: $19.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1573220922
Catlog: Book (1997-09-01)
Publisher: Riverhead Books
Sales Rank: 150213
Average Customer Review: 4.57 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Freak is John Leguizamo's hilarious coming-of-age story.One of his generation's sharpest comic talents, Leguizamo returns to the Queens of his youth, where a boy's feet had to be as quick as his mouth.Freak is an adaptation of Leguizamo's autobiographical Broadway show and includes material never-before-seen-or-heard.Uncut, unstable, and oversexed, Freak is John Leguizamo at his uproarious best. ... Read more

Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Leguizamo's upside-down world
The semi-autobiographical "Freak," developed with director David Bar Katz, made its Broadway debut at the Cort Theatre on Jan. 20, 1998. The book is a 1997 draft adapted for reading. The HBO show, filmed by Spike Lee, garnered for Leguizamo a "Best Performance" Emmy in a variety or music program. "Freak" follows two other Leguizamo stage shows, "Mambo Mouth" (1991) and "Spic-O-Rama" (1992).

The book renders a highly suspect, obscenely comical portrayal of Leguizamo's family and friends during his growing years. Describing his birth, Leguizamo says, "My first view of the world was upside down and between my mom's legs. And they wonder why I have problems." One of my favorite scenes from the book was when Nuyorican (New York Puerto Rican) Leguizamo meets up with his first "militant orthodox feminist vegan radical Latino separatist," in other words, a West Coast Chicano.

The book's design is highly complementary to the text. On the front cover, a big-mouth drawing of Leguizamo is pasted over a vibrating hot magenta and aqua striped background. A bright yellow, boldly lettered "FREAK" emerges from behind Leguizamo's head. Inside the book, the beginning of each scene triggers a repeated, visually stimulating opening sequence. The scene's title is set in an 84-pt. gray fringe typeface boxed by a 1-pt. white border on an all-black background, followed by a second page at the center of which is a cropped circle of Leguizamo's mischief-filled smiling face. The opening lines of the scene spiral outward, gradually increasing in size, from the face. On the third page are the opening lines repeated again (in case you skipped reading the text spiral). Thereafter, the rest of the text follows. Other quirky design details infiltrate the book. I'd keep this book in my library for its design as much as its content.

5-0 out of 5 stars Well....
John Said Himself That This Was Based On His Life And How He Really Exaggerated It For The Play And Then To The Book.I Have Seen Part Of The One-Man Show On HBO And I Thought It Was Really Funny.The Book Contains Some Pretty Funny And Weird Subject Matter.I Think That The Elaberation Of The "Characters" In The Book Were Really Funny And Had Some Cool Dialoge.One Part I Thought Was Grose-Out Funny Was His Father's Way Of Trying To Get The KFC Lady To Help John Became A Man.It Is Certinaly Not For Delicate Ears And Open For Open Minds.Hope You Like My Review...Feel Free To Look At My Others.Bye,Bye Now.....Have A Good Day

5-0 out of 5 stars Speechless!
Buy this book,go see the show,try to find a copy of the show on video tape.It's great.

5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!
Though nothing could be as good as Leguizamo's performance in his one-man Broadway show Freak, this short book comes close. If you've seen Freak, you will definitely want to own this print version. It is not exactly the same, but it is very similiar. Outstanding!

5-0 out of 5 stars Very Entertaining and fun
A very enjoyable book, highly reccomende ... Read more


175. Rotten: No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs : The Authorized Autobiography Johnny Rotten of the Sex Pistols
by John Lydon, Keith Zimmerman, Kent Zimmerman
list price: $15.00
our price: $10.20
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 031211883X
Catlog: Book (1995-04-01)
Publisher: Picador USA
Sales Rank: 23795
Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

"Much has been written about the Sex Pistols. Much of it has either been sensationalism or journalistic psychobabble. The rest has been mere spite. This book is as close to the truth as one can get ... This means contradictions and insults have not been edited, and neither have the compliments, if any. I have no time for lies or fantasy, and neither should you. Enjoy or die."

So writes author John Lydon, a.k.a. Johnny Rotten, in his introduction to the book Rotten, an oral history of punk: angry, honest, and crackling with energy. Seventies punk has been romanticized by the media and the up-and-coming punk bands of today, but the sneering, leering disaffection of that time has been lost. Now, Lydon candidly and at times, dare we say it, fondly looks back at himself, the Sex Pistols, and the "no future" attitude of the time. Rolling Stone calls Lydon a "pavement philosopher whose Dickensian roots blossom with Joycean color," and the San Francisco Chronicle calls Rotten an "invaluable [book] ... sheds welcome light on that short period of great music and spasmodic cultural change."

Bollocks you say? Read, sneer, and enjoy or die. ... Read more

Reviews (49)

5-0 out of 5 stars Terrific autobio by one of the founding fathers of punk
Unfortunately, with all of the hype concerning the infamous Sex Pistols, their rapid rise and just as rapid decline and break-up, people have a tendency to forgot about the people involved in the band. Although Johnny Rotten is probably the most well-known member of the Pistols (I say probably because Sid Vicious is, quite possibly, more well-known), he is often seen as little more than a "punk rock" icon. In this book, he sets it straight, as he sees it. It is an incredibly good read, and Lydon (his real last name) is brutally honest about his home life, his childhood, his inclusion into the Pistols and the breakup and demise of the Pistols. The book is, at times, depressing, touching and upsetting, but it is always entertaining and, surprisingly, incredibly funny. Lydon is a very witty guy, and he holds nothing back in this autobio. Definately recommend for anyone interested in the man, the Pistols or punk in general.

5-0 out of 5 stars FANTASTIC !!!!
You don't have to be a SEX PISTOLS fan to enjoy this book. If you remember the 'uproar' punk rock caused in 1977-1979, this is for you !

John Rotten is such a breath of fresh air, compaired to all the other rock stars of the past. He is witty, downright RUDE at times, and a 'kid at heart'.

Basically, this book talks about him growing up in the working class part of London and what started the whole punk rock scene. He takes us from Kings Row to the recording studio to Buckingham Palace to small club gigs and then to America, to wrap up the ENTIRE Sex Pistols' career. It's all here: Sid's battle with heroin, Johnny's feuding with manager Malcome McLaren, Steve Jones (guitarist) & Paul Cook (drummer) remeberences of what it was like to be a Pistol, the battles with Sid's girlfriend Nancy and the trouble she caused, Johnny's court battle with Pistols management after the breakup of the band, ect. ect....

If you EVER had an interest in the Pistols, you will LOVE this book. ALL questions are answered and put to rest. If you always HATED the Pistols, I suggest reading John's book ANYWAY because it will make you think again about the 'tallent' this band had. They changed the face of music...Without THEM, there would have been NO indie rock - NO alternative rock - and NO 'new wave' rock. They were WAY before their time.

John's book is honest and down to earth...He admits his mistakes...He admits his faults...He admits the Pistols had little or no tallent as a touring band...This is a man everyone always thought of has having an EGO problem. Read this book ! He could very well be the most CARING person in the rock industry...You might not always agree with WHAT he says, but he will make you THINK....And THAT is a sign of a true artist !

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book, a must if you want the facts and perspective
I'm only 15, this being my first book and the fact that I actually read it completely amuses me. I've liked Sex Pistols for about 3 years now and definately like them more now after reading this book.

Johnny is brutally honest in this book, and the fact that the former band members contributed to this book didn't hold back his criticism of them, wich surprised me, and it works the other way around too. It gives you the facts and perspective from the guy who was there taking heat from the press and so on. The fact alone that they did this in the 1970's earns them some serious respect, it was new, unique. One of a kind, in my opinion.

This book was released 10 years ago though, so I'm looking forward to Johnny's next book, in an interview('02) he said he'd write "several" and mentioned one about his band, Public Image Limited and another one about political process.
Keep your eyes peeled.

4-0 out of 5 stars A repulsive charisma
There's a lot of denial and acceptance, boasting and modesty going on here, but these are the contradictions we should expect from John Lydon. But, frankly, this is a very enjoyable book, no matter how much of this narrative is tongue-in-cheek, and no matter how much he tries to repulse us. Personally, I enjoyed the earlier chapters much more than the later ones. The story of his early childhood rings more of the truth. He may be embellishing the hardship he endured, trying to make himself sound more like a Dickensian poorboy, but I don't think the embellishment is necessarily exaggeration. Growing up Irish where he grew up could not have been easy. Who would brag about such suffering?

The later chapters have a more defensive ring to them. Maybe he has a right to such a stance, if he is speaking is truth. But you never know with Mr. Lydon. And by this time, the whole story of the disintegration of the Pistols, and of Mr. Vicious, have entered into rock 'n' roll mythology/legend/hype. Nonetheless, this book reads so much differently than most rock autobiographies, biographies, and histories. First of all, there is no presence of a ghostwriter behind the scenes. This is John, no doubt, and his caustic wit. Also, there is no holier-than-thou or rockier-than-thou or druggier-than-thou tone. Lastly, he allows some other people to speak, although the quotes seem highly selective at times. In any event, he is not hogging the microphone; he's screaming at it, as usual, as he should. I would expect nothing less than that.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Not So Rotten Review
John Lydon's Rotten was a great read. I am a person who enjoys the Sex Pistols and i have always been curious about how they came about being so different. This book sticks you right in with the everyday hardships of the band and its like you get to know all of them personally. Not only do you get to learn about the Sex Pistols and Johnny Rotten but also Punk Rock and its history. The only thing is that there were a few too many details for me, i think they took a little too long to get to the interesting parts. Other than that a great and educational read. ... Read more


176. The F Word: How to Survive Your Family
by Carl Kurlander, Louis Anderson, Louie Anderson
list price: $23.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0446530174
Catlog: Book (2002-09)
Publisher: Warner Books
Sales Rank: 62979
Average Customer Review: 4.14 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Puts the "fun" back in dysfunctional
This is one of the most readable books I've enjoyed in a long time. If you were raised in a dysfunctional family or know a dysfunctional family or even live near a dysfunctional family, then this book is for you!

Mr. Anderson writes in a very easy-to-read conversational manner. It feels as if you're sitting in a room with him exchanging family "war" stories. The book is filled with both serious and funny anecdotes about his own family and those families he has come across as a stand-up comedian. He is refreshingly honest about the problems faced by he and his brothers and sisters both now and in the past as a result of their upbringing. The basic message of the book is to try to accept your family members for who they are and to accept yourself as well, with as much grace as possible. As Mr. Anderson so aptly puts it, "we are all crazy people raised by crazy people who were raised by crazy people." And that's okay!

3-0 out of 5 stars A gift.
My wife fell in love with Louie while watching him host Family Feud, so I got her this for Christmas. Combining humor with unflinching honesty, Anderson uses his own troubles and family history to try and understand how best to let go and let wounds heal. Easier said than done, but entertaining reading nonetheless.

5-0 out of 5 stars The king of comedy does it again!
Louie Anderson, the king of family comedy, has done it again. He has brought us into his family by sharing his deepest secrets on how to survive the burden of having "family time". Louie has the ability to draw the reader into his world and make us all feel like part of his family. His survival tips are stellar and writing unsurpassed. He truly knows the way to our heart by an honest look at the strange people we all have in our families. Our hats off to you, Louie, and writing partner Carl Kurlander for a brilliant look into the science of family relations.

5-0 out of 5 stars The F Word: How to Survive Your Family
The F Word is a wonderful followup to his book, Dear Dad. Louie's candid reflection of his family life leads the reader to ponder one's own family dynamics & how we deal with them. Louie's humor is playfully interwoven so that it is entertaining, as well as insightful!

5-0 out of 5 stars The "F" is for "Funny"
"The F Word" is a hilarious look at family life. A great follow up to "Dear Dad." Louie's insights and humor are as sharp and entertaining as ever. ... Read more


177. Afterglow: A Last Conversation with Pauline Kael
by Francis Davis
list price: $18.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0306811928
Catlog: Book (2002-09)
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Sales Rank: 419712
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

On the first anniversary of her death, a deliciously far-ranging conversation about the movies and more with the most influential film critic of our time-Pauline Kael. Who else but Pauline Kael would have said: "It's not fun writing about bad movies. I used to think it was bad for my skin." On September 3, 2001, the movies and those who love them lost one of their greatest friends-a friend who never tired of championing the best that the movies could offer and didn't shrink from taking to task any film, director, or actor she thought deserved a taste of her famously acerbic wit. Kael's insight, spirit, and straight-shooting won her singular respect in both movie and literary circles, as well as a passionate following for her New Yorker columns and her inimitably titled books such as I Lost It at the Movies and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. Shortly before her death, Kael sat down with Francis Davis for a series of conversations about her life and work-and, of course, the movies. Among many, many things she talks here of her early days as a critic, her career at the New Yorker, the directors she knew (for better or worse), her disappointment with recent cinema, and her renewed interest in television. It's funny, it's controversial, it's right-on-the-mark-and time and again you realize that no could would have dared to say that, in just that way, except Pauline Kael. ... Read more

Reviews (9)

3-0 out of 5 stars Kael was great, but biased against European film
A few short comments about Pauline Kael's movie criticism.

Like most people who are serious about film, I, too, believe Pauline Kael was a brilliant and irrreplaceable critic -- but this does not mean that she didn't have her flaws.Kael was a superb critic in any number of ways.She was outstanding in her ability to write about screen acting, today one of the most neglected areas of film criticism. (Stanley Kauffmann writes better about acting than anybody else around; but then, he is the best serious film critic writing today.)Kael was superb at detecting new and important talent, at understanding the ways in which movies reflect and interact with cultural currents, at conveying her ardor and passion for directors and actors, at the potentiality of film for exploring human sexuality.She was also simply a hell of a good writer, and the depth of her knowledge of film, books, theatre, dance, etc., all played importantly in making her a great critic.

But Kael was not perfect.Some of her reviews simply run on long after she has made her point; and although I love the hyperbole of her writing, sometimes it seems hyperbole for hyperbole's sake.

Also, and I think this was her chief flaw as a critic, she displayed a bias against certain non-English-language directors and their work.In this regard, the brilliant Penelope Gilliatt was Kael's superior. Gilliatt was a brilliant film critic (part of the great team of Ken Tynan and Gilliatt at the Observer [London] before she moved to The New Yorker), a dazzlingly talented writer of screenplays, short stories, novels, television and radio plays, and profiles; she was also an opera librettist and writer of nonfiction (her books on movie comedy and on Tati and Renoir are invaluable), theatre criticism, book reviews, and essays. (Her IQ was higher than Einstein's!)

Gilliatt had a far deeper understanding of that elusive element in the arts -- style.Her criticism is vastly better than Kael's on films from Europe (she was notoriously better at writing about films from Eastern Europe), Asia (Ozu, for a supreme example), about science fiction (Gilliatt was the "only" major critic to stand up for 2001), about directiors experimenting with stylistic devices (Fassbinder, for another supreme example), and simply had a wider view regarding the possibilities of film as an art form.Gilliatt also was better at writing about the films of Godard (though, Kael, too championed his work of the 60s, Gilliatt's criticism today stands higher), Bresson, Bergman, Fellini, and many, many more foreign-language directors.

Of course, no critic is perfect.Even Agee had a severe flaw --he couldn't write worth a damn about acting, and often contradicted himself.So, Kael, in perspective, was a great, if deeply imperfect critic -- and god knows I miss her writing terribly.Denby and Lane, compared with Gilliatt and Kael, are but pale comparisons to The New Yorker's once great women thinkers -- Gilliatt (whose talents were panoramic) and Kael, who could make your pulse race with excitement.

3-0 out of 5 stars Kael never lost her edge
Afterglow gives Pauline Kael fans a chance to hear her opinions on the big films that were released after she stopped reviewing them.You miss her great long prose in an interview like this, but you still get the insight in little capsules.

Most surprisingly is her love of the television show, Sex and the City.She makes a good point about how TV shows filmed in New York like Law and Order and Sex and the City have better actors and guest stars because they can easily get them from New York theatre.

There's a funny moment in the story where the author tries to convince Kael to watch the independent movie CROUPIER.He can't admit that he has already seen it, because Kael wouldn't hear of him watching it twice, she herself being famous for watching a movie just once.Kael does later admit that she has seen just a few movies twice but it's rare.

Like always, Kael's movie taste surprises you.She's always been good at pointing out the flaws of movies that you like, and sometimes forgiving of movies that you didn't get.Here she sums her thoughts up with a sentence or two.The book acts as a nice epilogue to an enjoyable career.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Short, Fascinating Glimpse at the Queen of Film Critics
In September, 2001, film critic Pauline Kael passed away.She had written and spoken with sometimes brutal honesty on actors, directors, and all types of movies.Kael didn't really care who she offended or upset.It's not like she tried to offend or upset, she just called them as she saw them.She unflinchingly says of Stanley Kubrick's `Eyes Wide Shut,' "It was ludicrous from the word go."She calls Spielberg "uninteresting" and melodramatic.

But she also handed out glorious praise when it was due, especially when other critics were ignoring good films and performances.She states that "Paul Mazursky hasn't been given his due," and that actresses such as Debra Winger have been wrongfully overlooked.Kael mentions several wonderful films that have all but fallen into obscurity, all because most critics are afraid to take a stand and swim upstream against the tide of their colleagues.

If the book concerned film criticism only, it would be worth purchasing.But interviewer Francis Davis also asks Kael to address writing, her days at The New Yorker, television, and the reason why so many awful films are made these days.`Afterglow' is a fascinating look into the thoughts of Pauline Kael, but it's far, far too short at 126 pages.

5-0 out of 5 stars An absorbingly written memory of wit, wisdom, and wonder
Afterglow: A Last Conversation With Pauline Kael by Francis Davis (Contributing Editor of Atlantic Monthly magazine) is an absorbingly written memory of the wit, wisdom, and wonder of a truly great actress, and the memorable chat she had with author Francis Davis shortly before her unfortunate death. Written in question-and-answer format, Afterglow preserves this remarkable woman's keen insights on movies, television, literature and much, much more in her own words.

4-0 out of 5 stars She was one of the finest American writers...
This little book is well worth the read. Pauline Kael is not someone you feel lightly about - you either love her or hate her (there's a website called die-critics-die that gets my blood boiling...). I adore Kael; she is quite simply my favourite writer, and the wonder of her interviews (there's another book containing a whole pile) is that she wrote how she spoke, so a conversation with her is like discovering a new review. Sure enough you get to find out which recent movies she likes ("Three Kings"), but the book is intellectual and moving as well. Few writers ever fused analytic thought with passion the way Kael managed - reading her made you more fully human, made you expand.

This book, slight as it is, gives fresh insight into her writing methods, her tastes, and her wit. It's not as flowing as it might be; Davis's questions seem sometimes to be deliberately elaborate for the unknowing reader (like the explanation about Richard Stark). This is a problem because the fun of Kael is a sharp and fast mind, so a conversation should be a break-neck brain tease among other things. Still, Davis's introduction is wonderful, and he's a fine writer (one I'll look up now I know about him). If you're a Kael fan, read this soon. If you don't know who she is, she's the most important commentator on the popular arts there's been. And she's great, great fun. ... Read more


178. I Ain't Scared of You: Bernie Mac on How Life Is
by Bernie Mac, Darrell Dawsey
list price: $23.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0743428218
Catlog: Book (2001-10-01)
Publisher: MTV
Sales Rank: 395061
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

"My granddaddy would get mad at all of us. He couldn't just get mad at one of us. 'Ain't nobody got...
You know what? Go to bed! All y'all, go to bed!'
It'd be like two o'clock in the afternoon. 'Go to bed!'"

Bernie Mac, the royal king of the Original Kings of Comedy, is salty and pissed off. The Chicago-bred performer has issues to get off his chest, and he doesn't mince words when he lets loose. No surprise, his live appearances have earned him a reputation as perhaps the truest voice of modern humor. Now, Mac has captured his comedic genius in print with his hilarious debut book.

Tearing through a wide range of topics with equal parts insight and irreverence, Bernie Mac shares views that may not sit well with everyone -- especially if you're caught in the crosshairs of his rants ("Kids today don't get the kind of injuries we used to get as children -- cut, bruised. Now, these lil' muh'fuckas just continuously get shot"). Still, his way of looking at the world will probably make you think and it's all but guaranteed to make you laugh. Taking on superstar athletes, the movie business, his fellow comedians, his marriage, and his friends and family ("You always knew when your grandmother was at home because her wig was on that little Styrofoam stand"), Mac unleashes side-splitting riffs on sex, religion, hygiene, money, and more.

Nobody is safe; nothing is sacred. Not even Bernie himself. Throughout I Ain't Scared Of You, Mac turns his humor inward, firing off self-deprecating salvos about his golf game, his own personal hypocrisies, even his sexual prowess -- "Women got toys...You can't compete with no dildo."

Mac's insights have earned him critical acclaim and international popularity. Now, I Ain't Scared Of You captures Bernie Mac's humor whole -- unadorned, unpretentious, and unafraid. ... Read more

Reviews (14)

1-0 out of 5 stars Terrible!
I listened to this as a book on tape, read by the author. I liked Bernie and looked forward to listening to this. However, after the first few chapters I was bored out of my mind and after a few more, I was disgusted by his language and detailed references to sexual acts regarding his daughter. Of the four CD's, by number three, I threw the CD's in the garbage where they belong! I didn't laugh once - not even a chuckle. Spend your money on something more valuable - like dirt!

5-0 out of 5 stars This is hilarious
If you love to laugh you must get this tape! To hear Bernie read this audio tape is just downright hilarity. Bernie is the best comedian out there today. He tells it like it is. People dont like when people tell it like it is. I guess thats why this tape has not got a 5 star review all the way around.

Now,if you have the book thats cool. But you must get the audio tape or cd. Bernie is hilarious. He covers everything from growing up in the hood. Why he wont go back to the hood-or should I say remember were you came from. He comments on his family,funerals,sex,relstionships-I had tears running down my eyes with the THOR story and every time Bernie yells out "Down goes Frazier!"He also comments on other comedians-why he would kill Moe from the three stooges. Lending money,and on and on and on.
If you like to laugh,you have to have this tape. I will buy the book also,just to have around,but I will listen to this tape until it wears out then I will go get another one. Bernie is the funniest man on the market right now. He will be around for a long time.

3-0 out of 5 stars Poor organization.
I agree, the book is put together poorly.

There were a few jokes that I wanted to go back and read, but it's too much of a hassle to find them, and all the chapters read the same, with many of the jokes repeating.

...pretty funny, but not worth the [money]they charge here.

2-0 out of 5 stars Not Good
I'm a huge fan of Bernie, that is why I am so disappointed with this book.

Before you buy this book wait until you go to a bookstore and thumb through the last chapter, which is sizable.You'll see the book is completely unorganized.Bernie will start off talking about his wife and as he gets going he'll suddenly switch to talking about racism for a sentence, then sex for two sentences, then his sister's drug habit for a sentence, then how his daughter is going to college for a sentence, all in half a page with no connecting theme or idea of any kind. Kind of a stream of thought type of writing. Just a totally random narrative. Very difficult to read.

Also, many, many words being shorten with an appostrophy after it "wo' ya' stop dat' Berine."Yes, I know Bernie talks like this, and there is nothing wrong with it, it is just that it did not translate well from hearing Bernie say it to reading it.

The big sin is when the book starts using the same jokes with only slight changes. It also uses the same picture twice. Seriously, I thought I bought a misprint; didn't I see this picture before? Didn't I read this joke before? Oh ya, I did, here, it is about 40 pages back! I think they did this because the book is short and need some more pages.

Regardless, I spent $ for this? Bernie has a great story that needs to be told.The background he came from was harsh, and how he became one of the funniest men around is a victory for the human spirit.If you just *have to* get this book, get the audio version, my guess is it would be somewhat better to hear Bernie tell it. Otherwise, let's hope his next book is better.

2-0 out of 5 stars Bernie Mac could have put together a better book
I have been a big long time fan of Bernie Mac for many years now but this book is a disappointment.Bernie Mac has a great show on Television every week as well as some great movies but this book is not what I expected Bernie Mac to put out.The sentences in this book are put together like they are from a little kid just learning how to use english for the first time.Bernie Mac is still an Original King of Comedy and I will continue to be his fan and support him but this book is just flop he will have deal with in his career. ... Read more


179. The 100 Greatest Stars of All Time: Editor, Alison Gwinn ; Senior Writer, Ty Burr
list price: $29.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1883013178
Catlog: Book (1998-01-01)
Publisher: Time-Life Books
Sales Rank: 257679
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Hollywood Legends
As a regular subscriber to Entertainment Weekly magazine, almost from its first issue, I have seen it go from fledgling upstart to its current vaulted status. One of my favorite things about EW is when the editors decide to publish a "best of" or "greatest of all time" list about a particular area of entertainment. Whether the list be about films, TV, music, books, home video, or the games people play, at some point, it's going to be ranked.

First published as a special issue cover story, The 100 Greatest Stars Of All Time, then in both a hardcover and paperback format, the book is a celebration of actors and actresses who remain icons in their field. The book is divided into catgories like, Tough Guys, Comedians, Godesses, Artists Beauties, Action Heroes and the Everyman--but leading off with The Top 10. All of the biggies featured in the book also include "essential works" and trivia as sidebars. The book has dozens of stunning photos. Like any list of this type, you may not agree with every choice, or some of the ranking--but that makes for a great debate as your reading the 160 page book. Either way you'll be muttering to yourself.

I'm glad some of my favorites made the list, like Jack Lemmon, Al Pacino, Grace Kelly, Sean Connery, Jodie Foster, Robert De Niro and Gregory Peck. The one glaring omission for me...Gene Hackman. Stallone and Arnold over him--no way!

4-0 out of 5 stars Great photography but not all on the list are deserving!
I personally have a hardbound editinon of this book and tresure it as one of the best books of my library if only because of the great photos conatined in it. Otherwise, there is a drop of bitterness regarding the members of the list. Why in God's name are Brigitte Bardot, Sharon Stone, Bruce Willis, Stallone and Schwarzengger included? Also, Richard Burton (#78), Peter O'Toole (#91), Anthony Hopkins (#99), Denzel Washington (#98) and Susan Sarandon (#93) belong much, much higher up in the list than there given ranks. Meryl Streep (#37) belongs in the top five, although the top ten are all but two (Kate Hepburn and Brando) departed legends. Why are not Audrey Hepburn (#21), Judy Garland (#23), De Niro (#34), Buster Keaton (#35) and Jack Nicholson (#17) immediately following the top ten? Miss Hepburn should be in Duke's place of #5, actually Marilyn's place (#4)... Marilyn can have #5 and Duke can be #19 or #20. Miss Shirley MacLaine is also unforgiveably missing from this list as well as Deborah Kerr, Claudette Colbert, Orson Welles and Ray Milland. Even actors from the legendary period are not deserving of being on the list... Bob Hope, Ava Gardner, Warren Beatty (the scum of the earth!) and Rock Hudson. I guess the entire public can't be pleased. In my opinion very few contemporaries should've been allowed to compete with the untouchable talent the legendary performers exuded... only Streep, Pacino, De Niro, Nicholson and Washington are in the class of Hepburn (both Kate and Audrey), Cagney, Burton, O'Toole and Cooper (another who belonged in the top ten... Cary Grant's later career can't compare to his work in the 30s and 40s, making him undeserving of his rank at #6). On the whole, this book as an entertainment is a delight but in terms of talent it is somewhat a disappointment.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Movie Fan's Delight
Every page of this 160 page, hardcover book is filled with black and white and/or full color large photos.Includes: Top 10, Leading Men, SexGoddesses, Tough Guys, Beauties, Every Guys, Artists, Comedians, Ingenues,Action Heroes, Rebels, Pros.Presents movie posters, and candid shots. Each chapter provides an interesting page highlighting the chapter.Abeautiful book worthy of a place in a movie buff's library.

3-0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed reading, but, not so good reviews of stars by author
I really enjoyed this book and the photographs were spectacular.However, the folks who ranked the 'stars' obviously hadn't seen many of the movies the stars were in.For example....#31 Tom Cruise over #78 RichardBurton...oh come on!! Gregory Peck, Anthony Hopkins and Al Pacino shouldmost definitely been ranked in the top ten. Frank Sinatra should have beenat least #11. How much did #53 Arnold Schwarzenegger pay the authors toinclude him in this list?!?He's the butt of many comedian's jokes. How onearth did Bruce Willis make this list?? I've been going to movies for65years and I consider myself a qualified critic and this listdissappointed me. ... Read more


180. Print the Legend : The Life and Times of John Ford
by Scott Eyman
list price: $40.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0684811618
Catlog: Book (1999-11-11)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Sales Rank: 443140
Average Customer Review: 4.56 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Borrowing his title from dialogue in John Ford's classic Western, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance ("When the legend becomes fact, print the legend"), Scott Eyman heeds this advice in his splendid study of Ford, finding a convincing balance between the gruff image Ford cultivated and the sensitive artist that Ford truly was. The result is a to-date definitive biography, occasionally prone to indelicate critical assessment while benefiting greatly from Eyman's full access to the Ford family archives. Arguably the greatest American filmmaker of the 20th century, Ford protected himself with a façade of belligerence yet engendered more loyalty among his crew and stock players (notably John Wayne and Ward Bond) than any other director. Eyman illuminates the Ford legend while focusing on fact--on a complex genius who would berate even the most vulnerable actor and then "apologize without apologizing," a binge drinker who never let alcohol interfere with his closely-guarded artistry, and a stalwart Navy captain whose service in World War II became his primary source of pride.

Print the Legend essentially confirms Ford's brief affair with Katharine Hepburn, but Eyman emphasizes Ford's deep, abiding affection for his wife, Mary, who valiantly tolerated his absolute devotion to filmmaking. While hundreds of interviews yield a comprehensive account of Ford's working methods (which the director was loathe to discuss), Eyman expertly navigates around Ford's own penchant for autobiographical embellishment. What emerges is likely to remain the most thorough portrait of a cinematic master who recognized his own greatness without parading it, and whose human flaws were ultimately forgivable by those--and they were many--who loved him. Readers should look elsewhere for more astute studies of Ford's films, but Eyman has captured Ford the man with lasting authority. -- Jeff Shannon ... Read more

Reviews (16)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent book about John Ford
I have read a number of the available books about John Ford. While this book doesn't convey a lot of the warmth that Harry Carey's personal treatment does, it is perhaps the best attempt to sum up what made John Ford one of Hollywood's greatest directors. It is clear the author has made an intensive study of Ford's work, and even more clear that he admires it. This book largely doesn't try to judge Ford, just to explain him. For that, we owe Eyman a great degree of gratitude. Too many other authors have, confronted with the genius of Ford's direction, tried to discount it because of the cracks in his personal approach to life and actors, or possibly because of personal jealousy. You must judge Ford the director on his work, and his time, not on our opinions of what he could have done better in his personal life, or according to our "politically correct" views of what he should have done, and this book does an excellent job on judging Ford by the standards of his time, and his life. This is a masterful attempt at explaining Hollywood's master director.

4-0 out of 5 stars Why?
I was eager to read this biography because I have seen most of the films directed by John Ford and was interested in knowing more about "his life and times." I learned a great deal. Eyman provides a wealth of information. However, given Richard Schickel's observation that Ford was a director who "delighted in in cruelty, publicly humiliating his casts and crews, a man who carried petty grudges for punishing decades and someone whose wihdrawals and silences profoundly damaged his family," the title of one of my favorite Ford films -- They Were Expendable -- reveals more about Ford's the reasons for so many failed human relationships than it does about a PT boat squadron during the first year of War War II. Does Eyman agree with Schickel? Even if he does, he fails to explain what Schickel calls "the complicated truth" about John Ford in Print the Legend.

5-0 out of 5 stars Print the Legend: The Life and Times of John Ford
I've read other books on this great Hollywood director, and while I can't comment on their relative accuracy, I can say that Eyman's book is the most readable I've found. He writes with a wonderfully fluid style, finds exactly the right balance between enough detail and too much, and mixes in some penetrating observations about the films and their style. He really captures that curious paradox of how artistic genius and personality disturbance can coexist within the same mind.

4-0 out of 5 stars Comprehensive almost to a fault...
Unless you are old like me and remember many John Ford movies from their original 50's release dates, or you have a semi-professional interest in film directing, this book offers more than one needs to know about a complex, often unlikeable, sometimes generous, routinely selfish genius. It isn't just a bio of John Ford, respected director with a 40-year career...it also functions as a partial history of movie-making itself, since Ford began before 1920, when films were silent, and ended up in the mid-60's, when wide screens, technicolor, blatant sex and violence and changes in how movies were financed stranded him in a very different professional atmosphere. To a person with a more casual interest in Ford and his films, like me, the book had many surprises. Ford was cruel on the set to many actors whom he befriended away from the cameras, John Wayne and Hank Fonda included. Ford was a binge drinker, and kept his sprees separate from his duties until the mid-1950's, rather late in his progressive alcoholism. Ford was capable of great kindness, generosity and loyalty, but also held grudges for decades. He was not only personally brave in World War II while filming the real battle of Midway, he was tuned in enough to have joined the Navy and prepared for documenting the war on film a full year before Pearl Harbor. He also showed courage in standing up to the Communist witch-hunts in the early 50's. He was sometimes a liberal Democrat, sometimes a conservative Republican. His final decade was full of illness and idleness and loneliness and undoubtedly some bitterness. If you are a lover of "American" movies, John Ford's story will be essential for you. I'm glad I read it, but I don't think I'll ever need to read it a second time, or keep the book in my personal collection.

2-0 out of 5 stars Just Another Ford Bio
I certainly wish I could join the parade of accolades on Scott Eyman's "Print the Legend." It is just yet another version of the many-times-told tales of the life of the eccentric, gifted director, John Ford. It seemed that Eyman was using a lot of words to say much less than other biographies on Ford - specifically that of Ronald L. Davis who wrote "John Ford - Hollywood's Old Master" my John Ford bio of preference.

As I read Scott's book, I began affixing red flag tabs on pages that have passages that are totally contradictory to what other people "who were there" had shared with me. I also had problems with quoted statements of Ford's co-workers and/or friends - sometimes having to look to a preceding page to see the identity of the person Eyman was quoting.

I know it is extremely difficult to write a bio when so many of those significant in life of the subject have passed on; much of the information is hopefully well substantiated facts, mixed with hearsay. Eyman is certainly a fine writer, and writing about the life of a man who thrived on telling lies to confuse and irritate as many people as possible, is not an easy project.

This is not a book I would buy - just check out at the library. ... Read more


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