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Accidental Genius: How John Cassavetes Invented the American Independent Film
In the world of independent film making John Cassavetes stands apart. Among filmmakers and film buffs, Cassavetes is revered, almost as a god. A major star of live television and a serious actor, he stumbled into making his first film, Shadows, and created a template for working outside the Hollywood system that would produce some of the most piercing and human films of th ...more
Hardcover, 496 pages
Published January 25th 2006 by Miramax Books
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I so clearly remember the circumstances around which I bought & read this book: fall 2008, strep throat, five days off from work, scenic strolls through Central Park, purchasing tulips to stick in recycled Kombucha bottles adorning my apartment, snuggling to bed with this. I read it in less than a week, even though it wasn't a super compelling Cassavetes biography (how is that possible). For THAT kind of book, check out "Cassavetes on Cassavetes" by Ray Carney, which is my favorite type of b ...more
The writing is nothing special, but not distracting. Fine tells the story--of course not detailing Cassavettes's writing process as much as I wish he would or could have--of a filmmaker I admire more than I can say. I can't critique a life, so I'll just say I'm happy to know more about Cassavettes's. I usually cry at the end of a biography or a memoir when the protagonist dies. Fine's writing doesn't really invite this, but also there seemed to be no major injustice in Cassavettes's life. You mi ...more
The third biography I've read of John Cassavetes. Nothing too different or new then the others, but the author is slightly more critcal of him and at least touches upon the topics of his alcholism and possible infidelities that the other biographies skirted arround. Still new info or not the story of Johns life is an inspiring story that I keep coming back to in various times of my life. It gives me fuel.
Very readable biography of a dynamic but secretive individual. For the most part, Mr. Fine shows respect for his subject except for a couple of digressions in his reviews of some of Mr. Cassavetes films. However, the love of those who knew and worked with him outshines any negative commentary the author feels necessary to indulge.
I love the works of John Cassavetes and really appreciated his acting as well as his films alot more after reading this book. My wife got me this as a gift. Honestly, one of my favorite informative reads of past years. But thats because I like John Cassavetes alot.