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Being John Malkovich (Faber and Faber Screenplays) Paperback – October 20, 2000

4.2 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“A wonderfully demented fantasia . . . inspired madness . . . a metaphysical journey about identity, gender, creativity and the urge to transform oneself, Being John Malkovich looks as if it were hatched by Terry Gilliam or Lewis Carroll on drugs.” ―Edward Guthmann, San Francisco Chronicle

“A clever and outrageous piece of whimsical fantasy that is unique, unpredictable, and more than a little strange. Kaufman . . . has a truly singular imagination.” ―Kenneth Turan, The Los Angeles Times

“More than just the latest cool, smart, funny movie. It jumps off the screen with . . . freshness, originality and [a] light-handed stranglehold on the Zeitgeist.” ―Jay Carr, The Boston Globe

“Every once in a long, long while a movie comes along that is like no other. A movie that creates a new world for us and uses it to produce wonderful things.” ―Roger Ebert, Chicago-Sun Times

“The most excitingly original movie of the year.” ―Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly

About the Author

Charlie Kaufman is also the scriptwriter for Adaptation.

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Product Details

  • Series: Faber and Faber Screenplays
  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux; 1st edition (October 20, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0571205860
  • ISBN-13: 978-0571205868
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.3 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #248,793 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By W. Parrish on April 4, 2001
Format: Paperback
"Being John Malkovich" is one of the most insanely creative films ever made,and a large portion of the credit for that goes to Charli Kaufman's moody,intimate,and sly script,presented here in pretty much the same form as it is in the finished film.Which is great,but on top of that you get,a stellar,caustic introduction in which the author is told to say a few words to the readers,beacause the readers are"owed...something"."I said I would try" replys our intrepid narrator,and what follows is a darkly hilarious trip through his mind as he tries to come up with something insightful or inspirational to say,all the while revealing his self-loathing and profound contempt.In the end, the best he can manage to come up with is "And if you're going to write a screenplay,try to keep it around one hundred and ten pages".Which when you think about it,is probably the most practical advice he could give.
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Format: Paperback
The real bonus here is Kaufman's intro--which, rather than explicating the writing or making of this movie, is an anguished, hysterical, can't-take-it-any-more Dance of Despair and Disillusionment that will brighten the day of any struggling scribe. "Wow!" one thinks, avidly turning the pages, "Charlie Kaufman waited five years, got the huge payoff, had a critical and commercial hit...and he's still absolutely bananas! God bless America!"
Los Angeles writers will especially enjoy the part about making friends with the take-out bags left on the floor of one's ever-more-apartment-like car.
Kaufman's growth proceeds apace: his new script ADAPTATION is like a feature-length expansion of his intro here. You've just got to love a guy who's an addled mess and doesn't try to whittle it into a cutesy Woody Allen persona. He's just cuckoo!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book arrived today. I cracked open the box, brewed a fresh pot of coffee and eased back to give this screenplay a read. And I can honestly say, for the first time, I'm disappointed in a "Newmarket Press Shooting Script Series" book.

The reason I buy Newmarket Press books is because the screenplays are always in proper screenplay type and format. This book is not. It's an exact reprint of the "Faber and Faber" movie tie-in screenplay published in eleven years ago. A glance at the copyright page confirms this. The screenplay is published in Times New Roman, not Courier as in most other Newmarket Press screenplays.

That's not why I buy Newmarket Press "The Shooting Script" series of books. If I wanted the movie tie-in book published in non-screenplay format, which is still available here, I'd buy it.

Very disappointed.
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Format: Paperback
Charlie Kaufman is a very loveable genius! I use "genius" as Emerson defined it: " To trust that was is true for you, in your secret heart, that is genius!" Wow! Kaufman is as vulnerable in his intro to the "Being John Malcovich Screenplay" as his character in "Adaptation". He is in such truth, that even his sad confessions are funny and healing to this reader & millions, who made this original masterpiece a hit! I have seen this movie so many times & reading the dialogue still makes me laugh, because it is so alive! It is great to see where he let the actors improvise, which shows how secure Kaufman is with his self. The actors were appreciated as artists with a great sense of humor & allowed to create & adlib. The end result is one of the greatest intellectual comedies ever made.This book is generous in teaching how to write with complete honesty and wild creativity.If you watch the DVD, while reading this screenplay, you can attain insight on why it is so wise to encourage actors to ad their own words to make a brilliant screenplay come alive! A writer who can let go of their ego, enough to do that is very confident within himself and nurturing to the artist within every being, even the chimp, who was traumatized by childhood memories in the script, but was allowed to make spontaneous chimp sounds. But seriously, Kaufman is a wonderful comic genius & we are lucky if we see his movies & read this special book he authored.
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Format: Paperback
This movie sparked different debates on whether the it's a big shot in the literature and movie industry or it's just a normal fictional movie. In my opinion, this one's a philosophical masterpiece!
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