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on 14 August 2017
Highly recommended to anyone interested in understanding more about one of the UK's greatest screen actors.

Ollie Reed was unique and this book shows many examples of his "Mr Nice & Mr Nasty" sides.
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on 12 October 2015
A comprehensive presentation of a talented man with some baggage that most of the rest of the world did not know about. Another side is shown suggesting that his public "performance" hid a deeply concerned and sensitive character who really cared about people - and life!
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on 17 March 2015
This biog tries to get behind the contradictions and perceived myths that Oliver Reeds family and friends think surround him ? I knew little of Reeds personal life except the tales of his drunken exploits and had only seen a few of his movies. Found this biog became a little boring reading about his repetitive drunken brawls and Sunday morning philosophies ? The early childhood account was interesting but unconvinced this made the man, we all have choices ? Glosses over his alcoholism and destructive behavior because of who he is ! You do understand from this work that Reed was a common drunk a bit of a bully boy who would have had more kicking's if his sycophantic body guard was not around ! A good overview of Reeds film career and life. I felt that this was an attempt to clean up his image a little with the help of some pithy psychoanalysis and humanistic forethought ? I have started watching his films on DVD and think that I prefer the actor to the reality of the man ! It's a OK read.
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on 12 March 2015
This was an enjoyable biography of one of the most iconic film actors of the latter parts of the 20th century. The story at times becomes rather boring at times-drunk-very drunk-abusive-aggressive-fine next morning. What I liked about the biography was that it did not go into too greater depth about the films, as for me I am more interested in the actor/person than all the intricacies of the film ,how it was made etc. As the book states Oliver Reed was very much a Jekyll and Hyde character, as times very generous and kind, and at times very cruel and very hurtful. The book is written well, with comments and observations from all members of his family and the people that knew him well or in passing. Well worth a read, but nothing particularly new or devastating about a man who had plenty of publicity during his life both concerning his on life on the screen, and his off stage life, which mainly seem to centre on pubs and bars.
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on 14 June 2014
An enjoyable read featuring an actor I've always had a certain fondness for. After reading this I'm not sure if I'd have wanted to go out drinking with him, but he did add a lot to his movies, even the direct to DVD dross.

The author certainly seems to be on Ollies side for the most part, so many of his most unpleasant aspects are, if not glossed over, then certainly not overly condemned.

Most of the quotes and interviews are from people who liked (or at least respected) Ollie, as an actor if not as a person.

There's a certain pattern to the book. Usually Ollie starts a new film, there's some description of his antics on set, then a longer section on his off-screen shenanigans. As his career progresses, the films get worse and the antics get more excessive.

A well formatted ebook, pretty much free of many of the minor errors that often blight electronic books (missing spaces, hyphens left over from the print version etc.)
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on 6 April 2017
Whilst the book can be repetitive it gives a good honest account of his life. I wish there were more like him in the world. It was good to see photos with this too which have been missing in other kindle versions.
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on 9 July 2013
Oliver Reed was a big man with a big personality, which means any biography about him needs to be big on research and not pull any punches when it comes to recounting the outrageous stories, legendary drinking games, pranks and general hell raising antics. Thankfully the two years of meticulous research and interviews has paid off to deliver a book that shows the professional genius of Reed as an actor and the personal flaws of the man as a son, brother, husband and father.

This is the first time Oliver's brothers, lovers, wives and children have talked to an author and their honesty is refreshing, which gives this authorised biography an intimacy and authenticity pervious books have lacked. Reed's personality is evident from page 1 and love him or hate him you can't ignore his huge presence, which the author has captured perfectly.
I was particularly interested in the stories of his early life and his often turbulent relationship with his father, whose stance in the Second World War as a conscientious objector shaped Reed's macho attitude over the years, and gave him a rebellious and life long love of the military. I was also surprised that, even though he was a notorious drinker, on a film set he was always a consummate professional, often showing a gentler side with impeccable manners to the cast and crew.
This isn't just a book about the hell raising. Each of Reed's films are dealt with, not just as part of the time line of his life, but also to show the highs and lows of his career and it doesn't shy away from his professional as well as his personal decline too, right though to those infamous chat show appearances.
Oliver Reed, in his heyday was raw, sexy and unmissable. By the end he was a sad act to watch. But you don't have to condone his lifestyle to enjoy this book. For me I find his antics a shame and childish rather than hilariously funny as many do, but Oliver Reed wouldn't have given two hoots what any of us thought of him or what he did. This book is about a piece of British Cinema history, it's about an icon and a legend, words too often bandied about now, but by the time you have read this remarkable biography you realise that for Oliver Reed they are very fitting indeed.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 18 December 2015
I bought the Audible version of this book.

Robert Sellers biography of Oliver Reed seems so fresh and vibrant, it brings Reed back to life. He seems to speak with a voice that I sense Reed would have approved. The tale romps along at a pace. Reed was a one off. A complex individual full of contradiction. A chauvinist, but a gentleman, deeply insecure but filled with bravado. A self taught actor whose interpretation of every role was inspired. And the greatest sadness is a life blighted by alcohol which seems to have turned him, on occasion, into a boorish monster. But it seems most can forgive his faults. There are moments of memorable sadness in this book. For example, the hours before his death and his return to Eire for burial. But those moments are also Incredibly moving and speak volumes about the man behind a facade.

Reed will be remembered by many for his apparently drunken appearances on chat shows. It's sad that a talented and interpretative actor should be recalled thus. He'd become a persona non grata in the film industry because of the perceived risk around his drinking habits. But after some years with little decent work, he'd secured a part in Gladiator. It was to be his last and possibly one of his best. Here was a man who had mellowed and whose film career was perhaps on the way up again, making his death even more untimely. It's a stunning and detailed account of a one off.
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on 11 August 2013
I bought this book not knowing a great deal about Oliver Reed apart from having seen him in a few drunken tv interviews and of course his fantastic betrayal of Bill Sykes in Oliver. This book is entertaining from start to finish and I couldn't help but let out audible gasps at various points because of some of the things he got up to. Reading this book has given me an insight into what a truly unique and talented man he was and not the "drunken fool" that he was betrayed as in his later years. Genius!
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on 10 July 2014
I brought the book as I'm a fan of some of Oliver's films. I was very disappointed by the book, the anecdotes become familiar and over-used 'Olly got drunk, demands people join in, smashed the place up, Reg steps in to stop him getting a kicking, he pays for everything and says sorry, buys everyone loads of drinks and goes home'. Its pretty tragic because until I read the book I thought he was alright but the reality it would seem is that he was spoilt and a bully and without his gang and/or Reg about would have been on the wrong end of a kicking a number of times. Robert Sellers is clearly in awe of Reed, there is alot of detail regarding the conquests, the fights, the 'he's an ordinary bloke' stuff but not much else.
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