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Hollywood
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 6 September 2008
Charles Bukowski's minimal style, always egotistical and mostly alcohol affected is concerned in this book with his succesful attempt to see a screenplay (for Barfly) become a reality.
Names are changed but it is fun to read Bukowski's views on the movers and shakers in 1980's Hollywood.
The womanising and drinking are subdued (due to being married) and even a hedonistic rebel such as Bukowski comes across as conventional compared to the weirdness and double-dealing that appears to be Hollywood.
Not neccesarily a good first Bukowski read (try Post Office or Factotum) but nevertheless good fun.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 17 June 2013
A good novel from a well loved author, Bukowski serves up another dish of gritty, rough, hard nose drinking antics. The main theme revolves around writing and producing a film about a period of Bukowski's life. Not as reeling and rolling as some of his earlier masterpieces such as Post office, yet still well worth a read and a must for any Bukowski fan.
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on 6 March 2012
Bukowski is a great writer and this return to his semi-autobiographical character Chinanski is a pretty straight forward affair. It is always good to read a bit of Bukowski, makes me feel better about people and how ridiculous we all are and here he reveals us at our most ridiculous, making movies.

It's interesting to read about the actors he comes across, who are easily identifiable if you know about Barfly (the resulting film)and hes as lewd and crude and drunk as ever. The great thing with Bukowski is between the women, gambling, drinking, fighting and writing there will be a page or passage that cuts through all that and grabs you by the heart revealing humanity in all its fragility.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 10 December 2013
Not as much gritty realism as the previous books, this is more about the inside workings of the making of a film. So those looking for gross stories and violence will be disappointed!
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on 12 July 2015
Another great book from Bukowski. This one is more about the insanity of Hollywood than his own personal madness, or maybe just that no one persons insanity compares to the collective insanity of the world of film. Maybe not his best but it's good to read about a more settled man than the Chiniski of post office, factotum and Women. If you like Bukowski check out his favourite author John Fante and the Bandini Qaurtet
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on 8 November 2011
I got this book for my Kindle and I'm already hotly awaiting the Post Office on Kindle release. This is the first Bukowski book I've read and I really enjoyed it, in many ways his writing reminds me of of Hunter S Thompson. Henry Chinaski is a simple but likeable character, a man of Hemingwayish grit. I might start with ham on Rye and read that before Post Office as well...
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 31 January 2008
In this novel Bukowski's alter-ego, Henry Chinaski writes a screenplay which is filmed in Hollywood. The book is a thinly veiled biography and charts the makings of the film Barfly which starred Micky Rourke and Faye Dunaway.

Part of Bukowski's charm is that he writes simply. However, whilst this works brilliantly in books like Post Office and Factotum, it works less well here. This is because the subject matter of the early novels features Chinaski as a down and out in dead end jobs - an existence that most of us are unfamiliar with. In this novel, Bukowski charts the excesses of Hollywood, which whilst amusing and shocking are not unfamiliar. The difficulty is that we are saturated with images of Hollywood and familiar with exposees of it. Amongst this, Bukowski struggles to tell us anything new.

The parts of the book that I enjoyed most were the sections away from Hollywood. Bukowski writes engagingly about his reasons for betting on the track and the psychology of those who attend. His visits to the local ghettoes expose a different type of madness to the Hollywood excess.

This remains an entertaining book and Bukowski is aware of the criticisms that some of his fans might make. He is aware that he is enjoying material wealth and whilst enjoying this worries that he is selling out. He is also aware of the limitations of his style. He quotes others accusing him of writing simply because he himself is simple. Despite this, Bukowski's voice is engaging in its bottomless pessimism and its self depriciating tone. This book is worth reading, its just not one of his best.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on 8 July 1996
Charles Bukowski goes semi-commercial to the dismay of many old
fans, the book offers a mainstream version of FACTOTUM. But the writing is of
higher quality, and Buk shines through. Look for celebs in the book under
false names... Mickey Rourke, Faye Dunaway... check the credits of the movie
and then re-read!
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on 1 January 2013
I love Bukowski and for the most part I loved this book but it felt a few chapters too long other than that it's fantastic and filled with Hank's classic look on the world.
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on 1 July 2015
Personally I find this the funniest Bukowski novel of them all. I only wish they make a film about this book about making a film...
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