There and Back Again: An Actor's Tale
When Sean Astin, veteran Hollywood actor of over 30 movies including The Goonies, and Rudy, landed the part of Samwise Gamgee in The Lord of the Rings, he knew it was going to be different to anything he'd ever worked on before. Here he shares his heartfelt opinions on his early movies, how he got the part of Sam at that point in his career, and what it was like to be on s...more
I can’t say that I like or dislike Sean Astin. I’ ...more
Oh Sean. Really? You couldn't get an editor? None of your friends would sit you down and say "If you publish this hot mess, you're going to make everyone you've ever worked with, as well as yourself, look bad." ??
As other reviewers have noted, the author spends much of his time snarking and whinging, and the rest of his time backpedaling and self-depreciating. "Oh woe is me, I am n ...more
This is the book of someone who feels that he has acted badly and wants very much for people t ...more
It was pretty bad, I admit. So bad, I would stop my mum or boyfriend and read out loud a passage and we'd laugh. Astin is very egocentric, yet self deprecating at the same time - a very bizarre, confusing, and unappealing mix.
I think this picture pretty much sums up how Sean Astin seems himself an ...more
Well, the stories in this book for the most part were not what I was hoping. Content is much less about the filming process and location than it is about Astin's mental/emotional process and insecurities. It's a ...more
I was fascinated to read an insider's story about what it had been like to film my favorite movie trilogy of all times - Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings. And who better to tell this tale than Samwise Gamgee himself, actor Sean Astin.
Rather than a narrative or collection of anecdotes about what filming such an epic film had b ...more
It left me with an impression of a whiny, disgruntled actor with little clue as to what he wants to do with his life, but he wants us all to know how brilliant, gifted and humble he is.
From the very start Astin makes ridiculous statement after ridiculous statement. On the first page he asserts that sometimes you have to just do whatever script you get as long as there ...more
I've been a fan of Sean Astin for years. I was absolutely fascinated by his tales of the filming of the trilogy, his relationships with his fellow actors, the people he met, his feelings, hopes, everything he experienced. It's always fun t ...more
I first read the Lord of the Rings trilogy when I was eleven years old, and have read it three further times since. I went to the cinema to see all three films wh ...more
Astin primarily focuses on his emotional and philosphical challenges over the course of the book. He name-drops a lot of actors he worked with, drops and anecdote or two, and then over-analyzes their relationship.
Most of the book is Astin navel-gazing, actually. It g ...more
It was a joy to go behind the scenes and experience some of the filming and creation of the Lord of the Rings. But it was even more enjoyable to learn a little more about this talented actor and director and to see life through his eyes.
A well told story and enjoyable to listen to.
Biased disclaimer two: I have met Sean Astin. He is a very humble, down-to-earth conscientious "working actor". He is open and kind to everyone he meets and works with. Sure, he tends to worry a bit ...more
I like Sean Astin as an actor and thought he was a fantastic choice for Samwise Gamgee in Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings. I'd wanted to read the book because I loved the movies and I expected to read some of the more close-in stories that occurred during such a long shoot and re-shooting processes to bring the film to life.
For the most part, I was wr ...more
Sean Astin seems like a nice guy on camera. In this book... hmm. Maybe not quite so much. That said, I get the feeling that a lot of his overly-critical, insecure and self-analytical mien has to do with depression that he apparently refuses to acknowledge. His mother, actress Patty Duke, notoriously st ...more
And, unfortunately, that is how I view Sean Astin in There and Back Again An Actor's Tale.
Astin's book reveals a number of insecurities, such as not ...more
Sean, known to us as Samwise Gamgee, had an earlier role in The Goonies so he can compare not alone the settings but the directors Spielberg and Jackson. He went to the casting interviews with a Cockney accent suggested by his voice coach, but while liking the actor for the role, the casting director knew that a countryside accent would be much more appropriate f ...more
Anyways. I really, really, really liked this book. It was funny, and I was able to exercise my nerdness to the fullest extent.
He spent most of the first half of the book doing a re-cap of his life (i.e. how he got into the movie biz and what he wanted to get out of it, and how he met his wife, and all that jazz). In a few of the reviews I read people found this annoying. I, however, didn't. I really liked ...more
In 2004, Astin released There and Back Again, a memoir (co-written with Joe Layden) of his film career with emphasis on his experiences with the Lord of the Rings trilog ...more