⚡ [PDF] ✍ Lulu in Hollywood By Louise Brooks ✵ – Saudionline.co.uk



10 thoughts on “Lulu in Hollywood

  1. says:

    After reading Laura Moriarty s The Chaperone and being disappointed by its noticeable lack of Louise Brooks, I wanted to find a nonfiction account of the silent film star s life Luckily, in addition to the numerous biographies available, Brooks also wrote her own account of her career It s not as comprehensive as I wanted it to be the book is of an essay collection than a straight memoir but is otherwise a completely fascinating look into the early days of Hollywood Louise Brooks had a unique career trajectory She got her start as a dancer with the Denishawn company when she was fifteen, and by nineteen had started her film career In the heyday of silent film, she was one of the biggest stars in the world, but her career faded immediately with the advent of talkies, when she refused to give in to the studios demanding contracts and was blackballed She went on to do several films with the German director Pabst, and then disappeared into semi obscurity Her film career was over, but she continued to be an active participant, writing articles for movie magazines Her career was short, but she was one of the witnesses to the birth of movies as a new medium, and Lulu in Hollywood is her account of what she saw in that time.The best aspect of this book is Brooks writing, which is clear and thoughtful, describing her memories in 1920 s Hollywood with no overt sentimentality Also it s just fun this was before Standards and Practices took over Hollywood in the 1930 s, and the stars of Brooks time were free to be as wild as they wanted Actresses, in particular, developed their own particular brand of hustle, which Brooks outlines here For a time, Barbara Bennett was kept by William Rhinelander Stewart, who gave her a square cut emerald from Cartier One night, when we were swimming off Caleb Bragg s houseboat, she watched it slip from her finger into Long Island Sound She kept this hilarious accident secret from Stewart by buying a fake emerald ring from Denis Smith, whose jewelry business was unknown to innocent lovers They would have been staggered to learn how many of their gifts were converted into imitations and cash Truly, ours was a heartless racket The little glimpses Brooks gives us into the wild life of a 1920 s starlet are fascinating, and made me want to read an entire book just about teen movie stars partying in the Jazz Age which, really, is what The Chaperone should have been And at the same time, she s exploring how Hollywood developed into what it is today It s easy to forget that in Brooks time, movies were still a new medium, and everyone involved in the business was sort of making it up as they went along, and not really thinking about the future of the industry To this day, there are hundreds of silent films that just don t exist any, because no one thought to preserve them Writes Brooks The tragedy of film history is that it is fabricated, falsified, by the very people who make film history It is understandable that in the early years of film production, when nobody believed there was going to be any film history, most film magazines and books printed trash, aimed only at fulfilling the public s wish to share a fairy tale existence with its movie idols But since about 1950 film has been established as an art, and its history recognized as a serious matter Yet film celebrities continue to cast themselves as stock types nice or naughty girls, good or bad boys whom their chroniclers spray with a shower of anecdotes A fun, fascinating look at one person s incredible career, and the beginning of Hollywood as we know it One star taken off, only because I wish it had been longer.


  2. says:

    Amazing, glamorous and intriguing, this book is undeniably incredible and definitely worth reading, especially if you love the history of film or acting.


  3. says:

    The modern actress par excellence, said Henri Langlois of the Cinematheque Francaise Those who have seen her can never forget her Her art is so pure that it becomes invisible Others have said that LB was a luminscent personalityunparalleled in film history who causes a work of art to be born by her mere presence Catch LB on YouTube in a few minutes of Pandora s Box and you ll grasp the luxuriant kudos.From the rigors of Bible Belt Kansas where she read the classics, and was seemingly abused by a nabe, LB arrived 1922 with a chaperone in NYC age 15, to dance w the avant Denishawn group and quickly joined the Scandals and Zig Follies revues With her looks and delicious style she soon met Everyone from the Bennett sisters Connie, Barbara, Joan to scribe Herman Mankiewicz By age 18 in 1925, she was having intime dinners w young Walter Wanger and Chaplin, and trying to choose among Hollywd offers.And then yes, and then she became iconic over the next 6 years though, no one realized it then , except for the great filmmaker G W Pabst who imported her to Europe when talent like Garbo Dietrich was heading in the opposite direction Refusing to return to Hollywood to dub her last movie, The Canary Murder Case, for Par when US film was moving into sound, she earned the enmity of moguls who would soon blackball her in LA LA The grease monkey Harry Cohn, sitting at his desk, half naked, dangled his contract, if Harry s last home made star was Kim Novak.LB was a spirited rebel who played by her own rules and lost Magical onscreen, she blended innocence w natural sexuality she was not an asexual victim or vamp onscreen LB was a gorgeous, perfectly photogenic star All Americana Mid30s, she was finished in US films and flushed out of the Hollywd cesspool.I m sure LB would concede she made some errors Butshe had millionaire beaux, and she was, after all, only in her 20swith not a thought for tomorrow She later worked at Sak s for two years and candidly says she was a call girl This book, composed of insightful essays written for filmzines like Sight Sound, presents a remarkable picture of an era, industry, and STAR who should have Reigned.LB does not Tell All Her last lines I cannot unbuckle the Bible Belt That is why I will never write my memoirs Here s a very disturbing remembrance of things past.


  4. says:

    This book was a delightful surprise Ms Brooks was very well read and this is probably the reason she turned out to be a writer with considerable talent A tragedy that it was a talent that she didn t exploit to the utmost, but then Louise didn t really exploit any of her gifts to her maximum benefit.She started out as a dancer but ended up in film almost accidentally her iconic role of Lulu in Pandora s Box is unforgettable, and I am very happy to have seen it After a couple films she essentially walked away from Hollywood to enjoy the obscurity she cherished, emerging briefly to appear in a horse opera alongside the Duke Talk about an unlikely pairing the hulking John Wayne dwarfing the diminutive dancer Louise is quite frank about her fall from grace, eventually working as a call girl and a clerk in Saks She doesn t go into gory detail, but doesn t try to cover anything up, either The book is generously illustrated with period photographs of Louise and other stars, a very nice complement to the text My only disappointment with the book is that it is not a true memoir but is actually a collection of essays Louise wrote about her past and her relationships with the celebrities of her day Ms Brooks never wrote an actual autobiography, as she believed it would be too scandalous A pityjust another unexploited opportunity for this incredibly attractive and intelligent woman.


  5. says:

    If you want to find out the whole story about Louise Brooks, Barry Paris comprehensive biography is the place to go I ve not read that yet, but the reviews are unanimous This book is a series of essays about the people and places Brooks encountered during her short, tempestuous career in silent movies By telling the stories of others her friend, Pepi Lederer, a Hollywood washout who was the niece of William Randolph Hearst s mistress, the actress Marion Davies Humphrey Bogart W.C Fields and others , Brooks deftly weaves her own autobiographical portrait The effect is not unlike Citizen Kane Brooks narrative goes back and forth in time, but she s skillful enough to hold it all together The portraits of people as they were and their daily habits provides a vivid eyewitness account of lost times Brooks observations of the famous are often at variance with accounts of them that are glossed over by publicity and myth She presents Bogart as a shy professional, not the mythic tough guy a role he grew into to match his own screen persona W.C Fields as a gracious man of heart and dignity, rather than the hateful shyster so often purveyed even by Fields himself and she s even charitable to Wm Randolph Hearst Marion Davies, who often comes off as a decent goodtime girl or victim of heartless critics, comes in for a drubbing by Brooks It s interesting to consider Brooks observations in comparison to others views Brooks writing has a laser precision it s too bad that she didn t write , but as she and others have made clear, this was a lady who took no guff from anyone and didn t do anything unless she felt like doing it Her uncompromising stance guaranteed the fall of her Hollywood career, but Brooks took it all in stride A fascinating book about a fascinating woman and her times I just wish it was longer than the pithy 100 pages and pocket change


  6. says:

    I ve been reading a ton of books about the early days of Hollywood and I had such high expectations about this one that I postponed it just so I could savor looking forward to it.And what a drag Despite all the mythologizing about Brooks whose acting I have greatly enjoyed , in the end, this is an acerbic memoir by someone who doesn t seem ever to have actually liked anyone and who was delusional enough to say in this very book that the people living closest to the old condition of slavery were movie stars I mean, over entitled, anyone Yes, it was unusual that she READ BOOKS in early Hollywood, but she wasn t unique in doing so, and unfortunately she doesn t seem to have learned much about her own humanity from the books she read This is a view of one of the most interesting phenomena in American history an isolated group of artists and businessmen and engineers who, over the course of about twenty years, created both an art form and a business to sustain it, and Ms Brooks can t see anything beyond her own shadow.I anticipated a somewhat spiky memoir by someone who saw through the system and fought the Philistines to find her own way, but in the end, I m afraid she was largely just a pain in the ass.


  7. says:

    I truly dreaded reading this Whenever I had downtime in which I would usually read, I found myself doing the crossword on my phone instead While I m interested in old Hollywood particularly the silent era and Louise Brooks s career, I found her writing insufferable She s one of those people who Values Truth Above All Else, which is nice in your art I suppose but in real life makes you someone who s not very fun to be around And that s not to say Brooks has to be likeable she certainly doesn t but that while this strain of truth above all else is woven through the writing, she s also omitting certain pieces from her narrative that would help you actually figure out what s going on in her head An example she grouses quite a bit about her treatment on the set of Beggars of Life, particularly in regard to a meathead she finds disrespectful and obnoxious but then on the next page, she s sleeping with him and grousing about how everyone made fun of her afterwards She skips B when trying to get from A to C, and I found her so off putting that I couldn t give her the benefit of the doubt I only got about halfway through, but as a PSA there s some good stuff in here about Marion Davies and William Randolph Hearst if you re into that.


  8. says:

    Brooks dangles the promise a dishy personal memoir but serves up an incisive revisionist account of silent film history instead Quite perversely, she often lightly skips over her most famous work while stopping to tarry over the seemingly superfluous, making the reader wait until the last chapter for any details about her iconic turn in Pandora s Box and work with German director G.W Pabst I found this an incredibly generous book, paying tribute either to the forgotten Marion Davies niece Pepi Lederer, her dear friend or recovering a sense of the actual person behind the Hollywood publicity machine and decades of myth making Humphrey Bogart, Lillian Gish, W.C Fields But this also allows her to always remain something of a cipher something that has obviously rankles some readers But there are other pleasures to be had, as Brooks is a gifted storyteller with a flair for the evocative detail and wry turn of phrase her prose style is unornamented and elegantly spare In the afterward her friend, pioneering film historian Lotte H Eisner, confirms no writing would be forthcoming, quoting a letter from Brooks I shall write no Writing the truth for readers nourished on publicity rubbish is a useless exercise Our loss, and let us cherish this treasure all the The tragedy of film history is that it is fabricated, falsified, by the very people who make film history


  9. says:

    Louise Brooks was a true original, a brilliant actress who paradoxically didn t care about acting and actively loathed the Hollywood system, she made a handful of pictures in the US before committing what many would consider career suicide and heading off to Europe to make the luminous PANDORA S BOX and DIARY OF A LOST GIRL for German filmmaker G.W Pabst Regrettably her career slowly fizzled after that and she was largely forgotten until silent film aficionados like Lotte Eisner and Kevin Brownlow rediscovered her old films in the 60s By then living in poverty, she was rescued by James Card of the Eastman House film archive, who supported her in her remaining years In return, she turned her hand to writing, creating these pieces, most of which were published in SIGHT AND SOUND, combining brief memoirs of her days in Hollywood that are remarkable for their clear eyed approach and freedom from self pity, along with reminiscences of people she d met along the way, both famous W.C Fields, Humphrey Bogart, and Lillian Gish, amongst them , and forgotten Pepi Lederer, a niece of William Randolph Hearst, whose short, unhappy life Brooks chronicles sympathetically The world may have lost a great actress when she walked away from Hollywood stardom, but in the end there s some compensation in knowing that it gained a lively and perceptive writer in the process.


  10. says:

    3.5 starsEven nearly 100 years after her career, Louise Brooks manages to mesmerize.


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