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 was less than half way through when I decided I was annoyed with this book. There are a hundred ways to phrase why I felt this way but I think Sean Astin said it best towards the bottom of page 180, “… I have this little self-pity mechanism I can click into…” Little is a relative term.
I can’t say that I like or dislike Sean Astin. I’ve never met him. I can say that this book doesn’t portray him in a positive light. He comes off...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
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
This is the book of someone who feels that he has acted badly and wants very much for people t...more
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 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.
He comes across as an incredibly spoilt and whiny person. I feel sorry for Peter Jackson and the rest of the cast and crew who had to deal with him. You have to wonder if this book has prevented him getting work since, as it really does not portray him in a good light. Whoever told him it was a good i...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
I did like it, in parts. I picked it up because I am a huge Lord of the Rings fan and have been for 25 years. I wanted to hear all kinds of fun, interesting and new behind-the-scenes info (beyond the DVD extended edition "special features") from my favorite movies.
I did get some of that, but not a whole lot. I did get a better understanding of who Sean Astin is as a person. But he jumped back and forth so much...one mi...more
Hello? This is a book about Sean Astin and his development as an actor/director/filmmaker. Which just happens to include the LOTR movies.
If you were looking for a book just about the LOTR movies, then maybe you should have read one of the "making of" books instead.
Anyway, I'm enjoying it so far. He's just gotten to 1999, so the LOTR bits are still to come.
Finished the boo...more
Sadly, I have to report that I became increasingly frustrated with this book - which was more of an autobiography of Astin than the 'insiders' look at the making of the trilogy. It took nearly a third of the book to get to New Zealand and the making of the films, and by that time I was thoroug...more
The first part of the book is of his early years and movies such as Rudy and Goonies and other lesser known films he was a part of...but then he got the call for the audition to be in one of the biggest movie franchi...more
As an actor's autobiography, though, it works, and is an interesting read, charting as it does his life growing up in...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