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The Good, the Bad, and the Very Ugly: A Hollywood Journey Hardcover – November, 1997


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 371 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow & Co; First Edition edition (November 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 068815462X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0688154622
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 6.5 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #245,313 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Of course the big lure ... is Locke's evisceration of Eastwood, with whom she lived for 13 years until they split up in 1989 in spectacularly messy fashion.... Locke is at her best recounting what it's like to live in the bubble of a superstar. -- Entertainment Weekly

Customer Reviews

I can't believe how awful this book is.
Mark Watson
Sondra Locke is a very skillful writer. her book held me riveted by her descriptions of Gordon Anderson;her childhood friend and life protector.
Pamela Foote
I found this book Very interesting and enjoyable to read!
Linda Derooy

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 55 people found the following review helpful By Jamie Cooper on September 30, 2003
Format: Hardcover
First things first: I love Clint Eastwood and his films, but just as with Albert Goldman's The Lives of John Lennon, I can read a book that details the sordid aspects of a person's character and still retain my love for their work and for them as an artist. Personally I find the fact that Eastwood, like Lennon, is no one's ideal as a person is irrelevant to my appreciation of their art, though it does seem that dysfunctionality is a hallmark of the best artists.
Sondra Locke's autbiography is a must read for all Eastwood fans as it does help give a fuller picture of Eastwood. The book is well-written and, when focused on her relationship with Eastwood and the movie industry, quite a fascinating read...a real page turner. I don't know quite what to think about Ms. Locke's relationship with her husband Gordon, but you can always skip over those pages!
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50 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Drive-In Kid on February 27, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book is entertaining on some level, providing a behind the scenes look at the underbelly of Hollywood. Locke paints Clint as pretty much a heartless, stingy, egomaniacal liar and herself as the victim. But an honest reading would also reveal that Locke left herself open to be hurt and had some "issues" as well.

The fact that she was married to an openly gay man (a childhood friend) prior to and during the entire time she was with Clint gives one a clue as to the level of mind we are dealing with. Then we have the detailed accounts of supposedly supernatural events that began to wear on me after awhile. Most of these incidents could be explained away yet they are given enormous significance as if they are some sort of prophecy.

I came away from the book liking Clint somewhat less, and thinking Ms. Locke was a few cards shy of a full deck. I also expected more detailed accounts of the films she and Clint made together, there isn't much about that at all. Hollyweird indeed...
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52 of 67 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 9, 2003
Format: Hardcover
One of the strangest Hollywood stories I've ever read - strange largely because it is so sensitively written in spite of the nastiness of the "plot." Locke paints a truly terrifying, creepy portrait of Mr. Eastwood, the American hero who is apparently a self-centered, manipulative, sociopathic control freak. What gives Locke so much credibility is the love she still clearly feels for her ex-lover, the fact that she is not writing out of anger but out of love and sadness. Eastwood's two-faced twists and turns are too peculiar not to be the real deal. This is an amazing book. My heart goes out to Locke, who seems to have been black-balled in Hollywood, and who was bumped from many TV talk shows (unable to adequately promote this fine memoir) and whose rave review in Entertainment Weekly was even pulled from publication by execs at the last minute - and replaced with a negative review! Entertainment Weekly was part of AOL-Time Warner - Warner being Clint's studio. (SO much for freedom of the press!) The man instills fear in peoples' hearts - and he'll instill it in yours after you read this bizarre love story.
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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful By C. Yordy on June 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This memoir is as interesting for its revelation of the real Clint Eastwood as it is in the unfolding of the three manifestations of Sondra Locke.

Sondra is no sterling intellect but she tells her story in an engaging way. It all begins with Good Sondra growing up Shelbyville, Tennessee, a gorgeous babe with large soulful eyes of Keanesian proportions and an ambition to be an actress. Through a miraculous series of events, she lands the role of Mick Kelley in the motion picture "The Heart is a Lonely Hunter", for which she receives a nomination for Best Supporting Actress.

From a career standpoint, it's all downhill from here as Sondra lands roles in increasingly shoddier films from the mildly disturbing "Willard" (a boy and his rats) to such forgettable trash as "Death Game." She is well along in her metamorphosis from Good Sondra to Bad Sondra when she becomes Clint Eastwood's concubine.

Though she and Clint are already married to others, she moves in with him. They make movies together and the arrangement lasts fourteen years. Then Clint grows tired of her, kicks her out of the Bel Air house she has lived in for years, changes the locks and ships her personal belongings in moving boxes to a storage locker.

Bad Sondra describes Eastwood as cruel, selfish and immature. While one can understand her disappointment at the breakup, it is hard to understand how she could express shock. She underwent two abortions and a tubal ligation to please Clint and complains, "I put my faith in a monster who thought nothing of destroying anything inconvenient to him." Where in her long association with Clint Eastwood did she think this relationship was headed?

It was said of Citizen Kane that "...he had some private sort of greatness. But he kept it to himself.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By FaireMaiden on September 11, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I wrote the following in response to so-called book critic 'Dana Kennedy's' review of Sondra's book:

Dana Kennedy: "I had a frightening premonition about the future of celebrity autobiographies... Everyone from Carmen Electra to the Olsen twins will be penning detailed and increasingly superfluous Hollywood memoirs. Lacking the rich anecdotes about classic movies, legendary directors, and passionate love affairs that the real stars of old wove into their bios, the tales told by also-rans like Locke are frequently padded with lengthy analyses of forgettable films".

I have no idea who Dana Kennedy is; but, the obvious conclusion I draw from this person's analysis of Locke's book is an unevolved wannabe in the world of 'being noticed'. Those that can, 'do'. Those that can't, 'teach'. Those that can neither do nor teach, 'criticize'... and not very well at that.

Dana Kennedy's 'frightening premonition' is based soley on that fact that he/she is impervious to the actual meaning behind these kinds of books. That meaning being breaking the bonds/shredding the veil of 'celebrity'. They cause us to realize that celebrity isn't all it's cracked-up to be. Dana wants to be regaled with 'rich anecdotes, legendary directors, passionate love affairs'... in other words, he/she wants to remain mystified, spellbound, enchanted with celebrity. Well, Dana THAT's what 'fiction' is for... not biographies.

Sondra Locke did not settle for 'almost nothing' in her first suit against Clint Eastwood. She walked away with $450,000-cash, a director's deal at Warner Brothers, and Gordon's house. She accepted the low-cash settlement and Gordon's house precisely because of the Warner Brothers' deal so that she could continue her career pursuits of directing.
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