Automotive Holiday Deals Books Holiday Gift Guide Shop Men's Athletic Shoes Learn more nav_sap_plcc_6M_fly_beacon Ed Sheeran egg_2015 All-New Amazon Fire TV Grocery Gifts Under $50 Amazon Gift Card Offer minions minions minions  Amazon Echo Starting at $84.99 Kindle Black Friday Deals TheGoodDinosaur Shop Now HTL

Format: PaperbackChange
Price:$9.89+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item

There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

Showing 1-10 of 35 reviews(2 star).Show all reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on December 31, 2014
Rather slow and a bit too esoteric
Difficult to follow the story, and the plot and the characters were a bit strange.
This was supposed to be such a famous and wonderful book, but for me it never delivered
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on October 10, 2013
At page 81 (the book went on to page 229) I was defeated and had to stop reading this Walker Percy novel.
I'd read 'The Second Coming' and liked it enough to promise myself to try "The Moviegoer', his first and best known book.
It is something of a mystery to me how this novel has made its way to Time's Magazine "Top 100 English language books published after 19-something".
Look, I get it; Percy wasn't a happy bunny and he wanted to tell us all about it. Hey, I am all ears if you want to bring on the existential angst, but, by Jove, please have a story to tell. At page 81, where I met my Waterloo, the glacial speed of the plot development made me throw in the towel. I read for enjoyment, but also because I care about literature and have some (no doubt thoroughly misguided) writing ambitions of my own. Usually, I don't mind "soldiering on" if it means I can get to the end of a book and say something constructive about it even if I didn't enjoy it much. But I actually started to dislike reading "The Moviegoer", and to such an extent that continuing on would be futile.
I was stuck for over a third of this story -which is painfully sparse in dialogue- with the morose musings of Mr. Percy.
His prose is not without merit, but the story comes across as overly self-involved to the point of being pretentious.
In the unsettling and brilliant "The Sheltering Sky" by Paul Bowles, the main characters contemplate "the meaning of life" just as much as Percy's creation Binx Bolling, but the difference is that Bowles tells a good tale.
That isn't too much to ask, is it?
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on November 1, 2015
The Moviegoer, written by Walker Percy won the national book award and is widely renowned as a great spiritual novel. It is said to be loosely based off of events in Percy’s life. The book, set in suburban New Orleans, follows Binx Bolling, a 29-year-old stock broker and veteran. Binx comes from a successful background of doctors. He has few friends and mainly talks to his Aunt Emily and his depressed half cousin Kate. Looking so desperately for happiness, Binx is “sunk in the everydayness of his own life” (Percy). Movies and flings with secretaries offer Binx a distraction from his dull life. Walker Percy produced an insightful and raw book following a man on a search for purpose and meaning and brings up age old questions that plague humanity. However, Percy’s novel dragged on with details of Binx’s monotonous life, and the late climax was uneventful and disappointing.
Although Percy crafted real and raw characters, they were somehow too life-like. I was hoping to find a page turner that would rattle me to the core. I was disappointed that all of the characters were so ordinary, depressed, and expected. Percy brings up great topics on the existence of God and mankind’s quest for meaning. It was frustrating that these themes were buried by pages of little importance. I felt I missed major parts of the character and spirituality of the book because of my young age.
But, I picked up this book hoping to find something more than a man on a path to self-discovery. As a high school student, I found it hard to fully appreciate the meaning of Percy’s first book. I so desperately wanted to like this book, and kept on waiting for something, anything, to happen. I believe in ten years from now, I would really enjoy and relate to this book, but, currently, although brilliantly constructed, this book was simply too heavy and philosophical.
11 commentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on November 2, 2015
After hearing a summary of The Moviegoer by Walker Percy from a friend, I was very excited to see what else the book had in store for me. I usually don’t read stories like this, so I figured it would be nice to try something different for a change. At first I tried to get into it, but later found myself literally falling asleep because it was so uneventful. Personally, I was not a big fan of The Moviegoer by Walker Percy.
While reading, I came to the conclusion the book was intended for an older audience, not for a fifteen year old. I think this factor definitely adds to why I wasn’t pleased with this book. Because I didn’t grow up in the time period in which the book took place, I was uncomfortable with the amount of racism and sexism. Although these attitudess were ordinary for the time era, I thought it made me feel uneasy due to the different society we live in today.
Throughout the book, Bolling goes on an archetypal search for his meaning in life as he approaches his thirtieth birthday. I was not amused by his philosophical mentality, but again, it was probably only because I am a 15 year old girl. However, I did enjoy his way of spending time at the movies for fun. I thought it was very clever of him to compare his life to the films he watches. Even though the characters are about sixty to seventy decades behind us, I think it is interesting that our culture still appreciates this activity. Binx’s mentality is always "..quite happy in a movie, even in a bad movie", and I believe most people can relate to this (Percy 2% of 100% on kindle).
SPOILER ALERT!! If you are one to feel at ease with a well explained ending, this is definitely not the book for you. Walker Percy surprises readers by sending the main character, Binx Bolling, off to be a doctor. He also marries his adopted distant cousin, Kate Cutrer, after watching over her due to her depression. The book closes open ended, leaving the reader pondering Binx’s next move. SPOILERS END HERE.
If you are a man or woman who grew up in the sixties and have a philosophical mindset, I suggest you read this book because you will most likely find it very interesting. If you are anything else other than that, just simply do not read it.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 16, 2014
I found the book's title to be misleading. Though it did mention Binx' (the main character) interest in movies, and made some reference to movies, it was like reading the conscious thoughts of the main character as he goes about his life. I was disappointed with this book.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Walker Percy's 1961 novel THE MOVIEGOER is the story of John "Binx" Bolling, a 29 year-old Louisianan who returned home to New Orleans after a fancy East Coast university and fighting in the Korean War. Employed as a seller of investment services, Binx lives an exceedingly dull life: "For years now I have had no friends. I spend my entire time working, making money, going to movies and seeking the company of women". The novel leads us through his affairs with his secretaries and his family's attempt to save mentally ill cousin Kate.

THE MOVIEGOER is narrated in first person, and Binx Bolling stands aloof from the world around him, rather like other alienated protagonists of the 20th century (Camus' L'ETRANGER, etc). The rather mundane adulteries and family turmoil he deals in or with are combined with his "search" for something more out there. As the title suggests, Bolling enjoys going to the movies, but this plays much less a role in the book than one might expect.

The book is really interesting only for its ethnographic colour: New Orleans at mid-century, complicated race relations, even a glimpse at Chicago. However, there is no consistency in the narration: Percy jarringly shifts from conventional narration (even making Bolling initially sound like a simpleton) to more complex, avant-garde effects. The local colour is at times too intense: a key part of the novel depends on a reference to an early 20th-century comic script that is nowadays utterly forgotten, and references to forgotten film stars of the era require so much Googling that it gets in the way of reading.

I was attracted to this book becaue it won the National Book Award in 1961 and Terrence Malick considered a film adaption, but I was ultimately disappointed. This is no classic, and at times it even reminded me of some of the self-published novels that proliferate now on Amazon.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 20, 2013
Boring, boring, boring. Picked up this book several times and tried to finish it, it rambles too much. Do not recommend tiss book.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on February 26, 2015
I started reading this because one of the curators/producers of the Prospect 3 art exhibition in New Orleans in 2014-2015 mentioned in an interview that this book was an inspiration or guidance or something like that for the art exhibits. So I thought, "Sure, I'll read it. I'll go see the art. It will be good."

I didn't even finish this book. I just didn't care about what was going on. The characters were not interesting. I did like the parts about New Orleans and Gentilly.

You - review reader - may enjoy it. I just suggest you keep any competition off your nightstand because this is not the fiercest of contenders.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on March 14, 2012
This seemed pretty weak to me overall. While Percy's prose style is definitely original, I found it next to impossible to care about the malaise of a Genteel, mid century Louisianan. Maybe this thing seemed to have a commanding vision of American life circa 1960, but its hard to read it now and not find it feeble, even impotent at times. Binx's personal crisis just feels hopelessly watered down. It sure doesn't have that sense of desperation and intense yearning which still make works by Camus and Dostoyevsky so compelling.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on October 4, 2014
I just could never engage with The Moviegoer, Walker Percy's acclaimed 1961 first novel. The book follows the movements of a disaffected soon-to-be-30-year-old investment broker in New Orleans for the period of about a week, during which time he has a beach date with his secretary, runs into his mother and half-siblings at the family's cabin on the bayou when he tries to take the secretary there and takes a trip to Chicago with a loopy and suicidal female cousin he is perhaps in love with. All that sounds vaguely promising but I felt no connection with the character, thought the supporting characters were either boring or irritating and didn't much care what happened to any of them. There is a strain in Western literature attracted to stories of disaffection with mainstream culture and that perhaps explains the love given The Moviegoer, but it didn't do a whole lot for me.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
Customers who viewed this also viewed
Lost in the Cosmos: The Last Self-Help Book
Lost in the Cosmos: The Last Self-Help Book by Walker Percy (Paperback - April 1, 2000)

The Second Coming: A Novel
The Second Coming: A Novel by Walker Percy (Paperback - September 13, 1999)

Love in the Ruins
Love in the Ruins by Walker Percy (Paperback - September 1, 1999)

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.