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Elsa Lanchester, Herself Paperback – April 1, 1984


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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Olympic Marketing Corporation (April 1984)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312243774
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312243777
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,016,476 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By E. K. B. on August 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Today most people know actor Charles Laughton was a gay man. But even Elsa his long term wife didn't know at first. But more then an expose on an that actor, we meet the other actor in the family, Elsa. Forever known as Frankenstein's bride, this woman had a wild wild life. As a child her parent were open communists who lived like hippies. She grew into a beautiful women who hung around some pretty awesome names in history. If you want to read about a strong-willed dynamic woman, pick this up.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By P. B. Sharp TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 29, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Elsa Lanchester's face is incredibly unique -a combination of vamp and pixie and a sort of sly laughter. The frontispiece of the book is a photo of her when very young, in profile, showing her adorable turned up nose and her great thicket of unruly red hair. Under the picture it says:

"Her hair is in the chestnut trees of London and her feet are in the mud of the Thames."

Elsa was still alive when her autobiography was published in 1983. She died in 1986 at the age of 84,over twenty five years after the death of her husband Charles Laughton. Her autobiography is delightful, funny, fascinating.

Elsa came from an astonishing Hippie-like background Her parents, both socialists, refused to legitimize their relationship with marriage because they were free spirits refusing to go by the rules. Elsa remarked that she rather liked being a bastard, it sort of gave her a delicious notoriety. The name Lanchester was her mother's name- her father's name was Sullivan. In a childhood drastically shortened, at thirteen she was giving dancing lessons after studying briefly with Isadora Duncan in Paris. The brief description of Duncan is rather unnerving- she liked to have her students kiss her hand before classes each day.

Elsa as a young woman became known for her dancing and performed in cabarets and nightclubs, gradually moving into films. She met Charles Laughton in 1927 and the two were married in 1929. She played Anne of Cleves in "The Private Life of Henry VIII" with her husband as Henry. She played Anne as a wily wench who had a boyfriend and wanted to appear so repulsive Henry would divorce her. Her performance almost upstaged Laughton, but he got the Academy Award.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Emily Blunt on September 2, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Sure, most of us even looking this book up know Elsa was Bride of Frankenstein and married to Laughton (and his secret). But, this woman had a rich-er life than you'd ever imagine. I actually read it twice (rare for a biography). Her parents, her youth, and all her days, were just interesting. And you discover a really strong human beneath all her character roles.

Highly recommended for both those who know of her a little, and those looking for a good read about a wild life lead.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Gina Scanlan on March 17, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Elsa was a great, great performer. If you don't know much about her you will enjoy her story. If, like I, you have always adored her - well, you'll still enjoy the read!
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