67 of 69 people found the following review helpful
LIKE A BOWL OF PISTACHIO NUTS,
This review is from: Hollywood Stories: Short, Entertaining Anecdotes about the Stars and Legends of the Movies! (Hardcover)
Well finally someone wrote a book, a collection of tales and anecdotes about Hollywood and the people who work and dwell there that is actually readable and believable. I must admit that when I first received this work I was terribly skeptical and actually put if off for a awhile. I am a bit old, a bit jaded and the normal Hollywood "tell all" type of book bores me to tears...well actually, not to tears so much, due to the fact that I normally fall asleep before I finish the first few pages.
Not so this wonderful collection! These stories about our acting "nobility" are quite down to earth. Some (actually many) are extremely funny, others rather whimsical and a few sort of down right sad. The author, Stephen Schochet has a wonderful no nonsense writing style that is absolutely refreshing in this genre. No lurid and off color stories which usually come from the mind and pen of `wishful thinking' so called authors wanting to sell books; no, these are bits of history; pieces of lore taken from what has been and is a strong and influential institution in our country. Like it or not, our entire society has to one extent or another, been influenced by the actors, directors, producers, writers and other workers in Hollywood or film industry.
Each story is smartly written and a delight to read. The author covers the entire gambit of our film industry from the old silent films right up to current times. While not every actor that ever made a film is featured here, literally hundreds upon hundreds are, along with many producers, directors and film makers. There is a bit of something is this work for everyone. There are even stories from T.V. land and its stars to pick from. These little anecdotes are for the most part brief. Many are about a paragraph long...a few extend past a page. Each story though shines in that it is quite obviously being told by a master story teller and a very fine writer. All in all, this is a very impressive bit of work.
For myself, I enjoyed the historical aspect of the work. I must admit that I learned much in that the writer takes us behind the scenes time and again to reveal little quirks, bright remarks, banter between actors and in many cases, why a film was made and how. All of these little tidbits add so much the enjoyment of a movie; both of those you have seen in the past, and those you will in the future.
This work can easily be read from cover to cover; non stop, or it can be picked up at random, a few stories read and set aside to savor another time. The problem I had though; like my title above indicates, this book and these stories were like a bowl of pistachios setting in front of me. I am one of those people who simply cannot eat just one of the darn things, no, no, no...I will eat until each shell is cracked and each nut gobbled. I simply cannot stop. That was the way of this book! Once I started reading the thing, I simply had to go on and on and on.
If you enjoy films, or are interested in film history, or just want a good belly laugh here and there, then you certainly will want to add this one to your reading list soon.
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Showing 1-10 of 25 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jun 21, 2010 11:13:24 PM PDT
Jennifer Cameron-Smith says:
A bowel of pistachio nuts? My imagination has left me behind :-) Sounds like a good read, Don.
Posted on Jun 22, 2010 5:50:22 AM PDT
I am with you on the pistachio's. In fact I am with you on this little book. It is a little froth of fun for the summer. Just in time again, oh great Don, cappo di cappi. I am a serious watcher of even comedy so this on the side is nice.
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 22, 2010 3:06:42 PM PDT
Hi J.C....yes, a bowel of pistachio nuts! A bit of heaven on earth. I am addicted to the things! This is indeed an excellent read and for anyone even the slightest interested in the movies it is almost a must.
Thanks for stopping by.
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 22, 2010 3:09:00 PM PDT
Aceto: This is one of those books I am sure you will appreciate! It is one of my review books, one of the very few, I actually plan to keep and reread (after the family finishes).
And where in the world have you found the best pistachios to grow? I first became addicted in Turkey and still favor the ones grown there.
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 22, 2010 3:55:27 PM PDT
Enough said. I just got the clock book. More there when I steal away some time.
My pistachios are Persian. So probably the same as yours. I am ok with California for snacks but not for cooking. I make duck with them that I grind with pomegranate juice. Funny we used to use them as hedges in Arizona, the poms. The result is spectacular.
Posted on Jun 22, 2010 7:13:32 PM PDT
Betty L. Dravis says:
This sounds like it's right up my alley, since I started interviewing celebs again for the second in our Dream Reachers series. The first DR has anecdotes of when I interviewed Clint Eastwood, Jane Russell, Ted Kennedy and others "back in the day." Jenny reviewed it; have you read it yet, DON? Anyway, I'd love this book and know it's different from our "cutting-edge, conversational style of interview," but the people we talk to are surprisingly down-to-earth and inspiring. This is a great review and I look forward to reading all those tidbits you digested... Thanks. ;-)
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 22, 2010 8:15:28 PM PDT
Betty: Actually I was thinking about you and how much you would enjoy this book as I was reading it through the first time. It is a pure gem. The author is a natural stroy teller, dose not bog you down with that old perpendicular pronoun, and presents his stories like a gentleman. I like that!
No, I have not read your work yet...through no fault of my own, I might add. My beloved wife is not overly happy with me right now due to recent book and pipe buying binges and I have to tread lightly. I will get it though the next go-around.
Clint Eastwood and Jane Russell...wow...I would give my eye teeth to set and talk with either. I can remember years and years ago that I had a bit of a crush on Ms Russell.
Thanks so much for stopping by.
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 22, 2010 8:19:12 PM PDT
Yup, same nuts...have had Persian and there is little difference. I will settle for California if I must, but...
I think with the fixings you describe even I...a noted hater of ducks (eat wise), would even sink a tooth into one.
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 22, 2010 8:57:48 PM PDT
Betty L. Dravis says:
HI, Don, if you're on Facebook I'll message you and if you message back, I'll send you a copy. Wouldn't want to deprive you of any pipes. Wouldn't mind depriving you of other books, though... LOL I have my pic with Jane posted on FB at the moment because my friend, Kat Kovin Pacino (Al's stepmom and an actress I interviewed and met for dinner in SF recently) just attended an awards where Jane and Bo Derrick were honored along with some others. We were chatting on FB about it. The last interview I did for DR Vol. 2 was with Tony Tarantino (an actor and producer and father of Quentin)... It's fun interviewing again. I think everyone had a crush on Jane; she was gorgeous. ;-)