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Wit and heartbreak collide in a memoir of a life intertwined with an obsession with film. A 'Fever Pitch' for cinema lovers. 'This book will consider the influence of movies on one life, the interaction of celluloid fantasy and the growth of a personality. It's not just a film buff's record of his enthusiasms. It's about how some films do, weirdly, change your life.' Beginning with his first cinema outing, 'The Mutiny on the Bounty', and tracing his passion through his growing-up years to adulthood, John Walsh weaves together his own life experiences with his rapturous dependence on key moments in film. The result is a funny, personal, loving account of the magic and drama of the silver screen and its ultimate, all-encompassing power to become larger than (real) life.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780007139316
ISBN-10: 0007139314
Format: Paperback
(197mm x 130mm x mm)
Pages: 336
Imprint: HarperPerennial
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publish Date: 2-Aug-2004
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Other Editions

Reviews

UK Kirkus Review » If you think you're a movie fan, you obviously haven't come across John Walsh. Here is a man who is so obsessed with the silver screen, and the stars that parade across it, that he allowed them to shape and influence the whole pattern of his early years. Everything the young Walsh did - from dating girls, to dealing with teachers and parents - was a lesson learned from the myriad films that he absorbed into his very being. This many all sound far too escapist and self-indulgent for comfort, but isn't there a bit of Walsh in all of us? Don't we all, in fact, grow up with some obsession or other? And aren't all our lives shaped by this obsession - be it film, television, theatre or books? In sharing these vivid memories of his formative years, Walsh invites his readers to recall their own early years, 'to raid his or her own filmic image-bank and consider what flickering presences, what seductive scenes and passionate epiphanies, made them into the people they've become'. Walsh's own 'image-bank' began with Mutiny on the Bounty, which he saw as an impressionable eight-year-old. Horrified at having to witness a man receiving two dozen lashes, an undeserved punishment instigated by the notoriously sadistic Captain Bligh, Walsh suddenly found the courage to confront a bullying sports teacher at school the next day. And so the pattern was set. He learned about pulling girls from The Sound of Music, about sexual decadence from Cabaret and, more alarmingly, managed to set fire to his house after watching the likes of John Wayne in countless Westerns. The result is a hilarious, highly readable pot-pourri of anecdotes that will intrigue, delight and amuse. You don't have to be a movie fan to enjoy Walsh's memoir, but it definitely helps. There's even a useful list of further reading at the end if this book leaves you wanting more. (Kirkus UK)


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Author Biography - John Walsh

John Walsh was born in 1953 in London. He is currently Assistant Editor of the 'Independent', he has written for and edited numerous newpapers and magazines. He has been a radio presenter and was director of the Cheltenham Festival of Literature in 1997.

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