HOLLYWOOD REVISITED: A Fiftieth Anniversary Celebration by Sheilah Graham

HOLLYWOOD REVISITED: A Fiftieth Anniversary Celebration

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KIRKUS REVIEW

In 26 mini-chapters: Graham's memories and opinions of just about every Hollywood name she ever met or wrote about--padded out with over-familiar anecdotes and snippets of standard Hollywood-history. After a brief memoir of coming to 1935 Hollywood and beginning her gossip column, Graham gets right to the Tinseltown laundry list. ""Star Chasing"" features Kate H. and Bette D. (her ""problem has been her irritability""), Shirley T. and Claire Trevor (""one of the few people I really liked among the acting community""), Bogart and Gary Cooper and Erroll and the Duke. (""Can you imagine John Wayne almost weeping on my shoulder . . .?"" Why? Because he hated co-starring with Vera Hruba Ralston.) Old flames are breezily recalled: King Vidor, Jock Whitney. Old rivals too: Hedda was worse than Louella because she ""tried to ruin people. . . if their politics or religion were different from hers."" There are glimpses of writers (drunk John O'Hara) and tycoons (creepy Mr. Hughes again). ""Misfits"" include Marilyn and Judy G., of course--but also James Mason and Ingrid. (Graham doubts that Bergman and Rossellini were ever in love.) The HUAC gets four pages; TV, the other 1950s ""Monster,"" gets twelve. And later chapters barely touch down on Ross Hunter, Ronnie R. (""he uses a strong rinse""), ""Children of Hollywood,"" drugs, parties, and ""The Movies, Then and Now."" The memoir equivalent of a big box of stale popcorn--but older movie fans will find this munching to be fairly soothing, occasionally amusing, never startling.

Pub Date: April 11th, 1985
Publisher: St. Martin's