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Denzel Washington: His Films and Career Hardcover – March 1, 1996

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Citadel; First Edition edition (March 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1559723815
  • ISBN-13: 978-1559723817
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,099,374 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

Denzel Washington is certainly one of the finest actors working today, having earned an Academy Award nomination as Stephen Biko in Cry Freedom and a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role in the Civil War action/drama Glory. But perhaps his greatest contribution to American cinema is something he has done better than any other African American actor before him--transcend racial lines. As Douglas Brode, author of Denzel Washington: His Films and Career states, "Denzel has always insisted, in his personal life, that he wants to be treated in a color-blind manner, while professionally he has always been on the lookout for just such film roles."

The best moments here are the revelations regarding Washington's film choices, including how he turned down a role in Oliver Stone's Platoon because, he said, he didn't just want to play "one of the black characters" who either "cleaned toilets" or "left before the fighting started." Instead, he pitched himself to Stone as one of the lead characters, the part eventually portrayed by Willem Dafoe. He has since gotten his chance at starring roles many times over, often with impressive results. This biography and film history chronicles Washington's film career admirably up through the 1996 drama Courage Under Fire, complete with 24 pages of photographs. --Walt Opie

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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By on September 2, 1998
Format: Hardcover
If you are looking for a definitive, "traditional" biography of Denzel Washington, this book is definately not it. Author Douglas Brode (who, it should be noted, is a well-respected writer of film and television personas) offers the reader a biographical filmography of sorts, which appeals more to film wonks and students of cinema than it does to the average Denzel fan. Strictly speaking, Brode just doesn't reveal exactly who Denzel Washington is off-screen; indeed, the first chapter, "Deconstructing Denzel," is as close as the reader gets to finding out about Denzel's past (included are brief mentionings of his youth, his pre-acting days and his time at Fordham University, where he got his first taste of "serious" acting). The rest of the book takes the film-by-film approach to Washington's career, squeezing Denzel's personal life into the extra spaces of the context in which each film is discussed. This approach becomes problematic -- and frustrating -- as the reader never really is able to fully recontstruct Denzel after the book's intro, a fact that further enhances the charismatic performer's notoriously [and ironically] enigmatic and aloof off-screen persona (anyone who's read or seen an interview of Washington knows exactly what I mean). The book, however, shines in its extensive analysis of Washington's films from a critical standpoint and enables the reader to be privy to "behind-the-scenes" information on all of his films, from the forgettable "Carbon Copy" (1981) to "Courage Under Fire" (1996), while adding an impressive technical insight not found in many mainstream bios of "celebrities.Read more ›
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By Joann B. Nelson on July 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I receive the book in excellent condition and in a timely delivery.
Thank you.
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