Customer Review

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Forrest Gump Does Hollywood?, 9 Mar. 2011
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This review is from: Bring on the Empty Horses (Hodder Great Reads) (Paperback)
I moved straight on to this from "The Moon's a Balloon", which I felt glossed over a lot of his Hollywood days. The good news is that this book gives a bit more detail about that major era in David's life.

It's basically a collection of shortish anecdotes and memories about many of the characters and aspects of Hollywood in the 30s to 50s, written in no particular order. He does seem to have led a fairly charmed life in relation to the high-profile friends he had, which seemed slightly at odds with my vague recollection of him being very much second tier at best. I don't mean that in a disrespectful way, as David always came across as a thoroughly decent chap and a great raconteur and is very much one of the good guys of the acting profession.

The main thing that struck me was that he seemed to be on very good terms indeed with some major players such as Bogart and Flynn, to the extent that I kept thinking back to Forrest Gump, where Forrest is seen present at many of the major events of the 60s, such as with JFK. Niven seems a bit like that in Hollywood. Reading around the subject, he does seem to have embellished the truth in certain areas, such as rather than sharing a house with Errol Flynn as he describes at length, he actually shared with the somewhat less alluring Robert Newton.

Those minor issues aside, it's a very entertaining read about the glory days of Hollywood and whets the appetite for reading more of the same.

By the way, for those who're interested and don't already know, apparently "Missy", who features significantly in the book, is actually Vivien Leigh.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 19 Dec 2011 21:33:35 GMT
Jimmy Silver says:
Missy is Merle Oberon.
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E. Smith
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