I have seen the documentary associated with this book several times. Both it, and this book, are chilling reminders of the history and the reality ofI have seen the documentary associated with this book several times. Both it, and this book, are chilling reminders of the history and the reality of the South American Drug Wars.
Pablo Escobar made himself an international villain that only death could solve. Pablo's plata o plomo method of doing business came back to pursue him to the death. His silver didn't run out, but there was a lot more lead headed his way. While at the peak of his powers, the Plata O Plomo (take a bribe, silver, or take a bullet, lead) philosophy held sway over the entire country of Columbia. Then it all came crashing down.
Literally. Escobar and cohorts blew a commercial airliner out of the sky. They were marked men not matter how much money they tried to use to buy themsleves safety. Combined with some rival drug kingpins and a corrupt government, his days were numbered.
Then there was the involvement of the US government, law enforcement and military.
A very large, chronological, and detailed reference book about 'the movies'. As a year-by-year review of the important and award winning developmentsA very large, chronological, and detailed reference book about 'the movies'. As a year-by-year review of the important and award winning developments in the film industry, this book borders on being the movie trivia fan's ultimate go to book. As there are continuing editions, it is not a single volume (unless one only wants coverage of an editions set of years) about all film.
The choices and style of including facts and information are more editorial than referential. They are mostly consistent for each 'year of the cinema' with a few odd choices as to what are each years most important industry events. Some of the people highlighted were/are of momentary notice and others at minimum always require more space than is available. Thus the qualification of it being 'editorial'. This contributes to the book only being marginally a reference work. As a starting point or to highlight topics worth more investigation, it is a very good (4-star!) collection of starting [points.
All pick details aside, any film buff will this year by year history with awards, box office successes and failures, beginnings and ends of careers of favorite(and some not so favorite) stars and actors, producers, directors, and all kinds of other cinema details a good read and probably a worthwhile addition to a film book collection. If one has the room for another 1000 page book!
See you at the movies! Probably not, I sit in the back during matinees . . .
I didn't like it. Honestly it is not bad so it is worth three stars. The Descendants is certainly more than O.K.
The story of Matt King and his familyI didn't like it. Honestly it is not bad so it is worth three stars. The Descendants is certainly more than O.K.
The story of Matt King and his family set in Hawaii is a downer. If you seek to wallow in others agony and dysfunction, this story is for you!
Now as the tale of near redemption and discovery it tries to be, author Hemmings doesn't quite get us there. While well constructed and technically written superbly, it just sort of floats along and draws the reader to the final pages. And then the final pages. I came away feeling that there are 3 or 4 final chapters tacked on to the end of the book. Instead of the near denouement being the crescendo it just gets hurried out the hospital room door and down the hall. I won't spoil this element any more than that for those who are not to the end or haven't started.
There is a lot of back story that is treated almost ethereally in casual passing that is the story. The reaction to it is the mechanism that drives the internal conflict of Matt King as what he will do with the rest of his life and his descendants. Also he is a descendant that has resulted in much of this story even existing. Confused. Don't let this attempt to comment without just ruining the book deter you from reading this book.
Can I recommend it? Tough call. I got hooked hoping it would be something more than it was. The book had come recommended from a few wide ranging sources. It is a readable story but it doesn't stand out except for some calculated techniques of writing.
3 stars for it not being terrible, a story that some people would like to relate to, a tale of personal discovery, family intrigue, infidelity, greed, and two or three forms of lust. But not a game changer.
An average or slightly above WWII history. Using the 'oral history' techniques of interviews and journals, letters, and even a screenplay or two, theAn average or slightly above WWII history. Using the 'oral history' techniques of interviews and journals, letters, and even a screenplay or two, the authors create a living memoir of those who were there and fought the war.
The summary or encapsulations of the events of WWII in this book are 'common knowledge' type for the most part and don't by themselves shed any new light or add unusual anecdotes. There are poignant personal stories and a few incidents brought to light again in this work that make it worth some time reading and reviewing.
The photographic and journalistic record the work adds is above average but not overwhelming.
Many readers will be familiar with the Television presentation associated with this book and most likely find it far more compelling.
Cynically it edges on being another profit center item for the Ken Burn, Inc. history machine.
Far too much history and hallowed ground is covered in far too few pages and photographs to consider this book definitive or outstanding....more
I am a horse lover, so this is biased. Secretariat was Pegasus come to earth for a few years.
This is a very well written story with far more historyI am a horse lover, so this is biased. Secretariat was Pegasus come to earth for a few years.
This is a very well written story with far more history in it than one would expect. The breeding lines and heritage that led to Secretariat summoned up the great ones from the history of the American Bloodhorse.
If you have ever seen that run for the roses (i.e. the Kentucky Derby) where this horse did something never done before or since, or that legendary day at Belmont where the rest of the horses appeared to stop, this book is for you. Whether on TV or in person (and if you are one of the select few who saw him in person I envy you!) watching this horse do his magic was unique.
The movie that followed several years after this story isn't half bad. Disney pulls out all the stops.
Take a weekend and sit down and just soak this one in, then pull out that dusty VHS tape or go online and find those momentous runs. Just think, this horse was still accelerating at the end of the Derby! ...more
Thirty years after I first read this, Koch's writing still evokes the same sensations and feeling it did originally. It is if I had only read it yeste Thirty years after I first read this, Koch's writing still evokes the same sensations and feeling it did originally. It is if I had only read it yesterday. The now long gone era of post colonialist fervor of Indonesia in the pre Suharto days of the Bung Karno (Sukarno's mad regime) is brought to life if only in the dreams of the characters and shadows of wayang kulit puppets to the sound of the gamelan music.
While the style of writing may be different than current fashion dictates, it is not dated and perhaps borders on ethereal overlaid by a first person perfect journalistic commentary.
The Year of Living Dangerously is the god-king Sukarno terminology for a stage of behavior of 'his' people to employ in their struggle with the rest of the world during 1965. Confrontation and other mad, as insane, phrases and reinvented words are bandied about in the politics of Indonesia in this moment in a revolutionary time. A small group of western journalists are on hand to watch and report the deterioration of society. The group includes an Australian half Chinese dwarf photo journalist whose intellectual fervor takes him along for the ride in to the depths of the beast of the fervor gripping the populace. The main protagonist, Guy Hamilton, another Aussie journalist becomes the victim of the many behind the scenes intrigues culminating in a final physical confrontation and punishment that foreshadowing hints at for a third or more of the book. If not morally deserving of the injury coming to him, he at the least, is another not innocent scapegoat. Contradictions abound in this world of unending darkness.
Set in the cultural and climatic density that is South Eastern Asia, The Year of Living Dangerously hints and overly rails at many virulent topics from racism, to poverty, to tyranny, to the cultural morass and depravity left from colonial times as the people afflicted choose a new social model. Blood, death, and chaos are never far behind the dancing shadow tales of a people entering into this world of Dangerous Living.
This story always reminds me of and I believe played an influence in the script of the Richard Dreyfuss movie, 'Moon over Parador'. That's also a favoThis story always reminds me of and I believe played an influence in the script of the Richard Dreyfuss movie, 'Moon over Parador'. That's also a favorite film....more
This is one I read earlier in the year. Once again, as a book club selection, I'll wait until we discuss it before writing my 'final' review and ratinThis is one I read earlier in the year. Once again, as a book club selection, I'll wait until we discuss it before writing my 'final' review and rating it - stars.
Some people learn, just the wrong things. Like many of my ADF reviews/comments this is more about the writer than the work.
An opportunity to learn frSome people learn, just the wrong things. Like many of my ADF reviews/comments this is more about the writer than the work.
An opportunity to learn from this turkey of a film and book didn't seem to happen. How a skilled writer and talent such as ADF could countenance this work and continue with film story re-write novelization, after this one, I don't understand.
Admittedly I read the book several years ago. It was as much to see if there was something in the movie I missed. No. Just a bad piece of studio supported film.
ADF's early work such as this should have given us a clue. But we've muddled on for another 30 years with many clunkers and a few surprises; a very few surprises.
If it's an ADF work that hasn't been a movie, it has more than a good chance of being worth the time to open the book. Otherwise, approach (or not) with caution.
Kurt Russel is still thanking his lucky star that his next film was Silkwood and his star really took off after this turkey!...more
A good story; the movie had its moments. This is another from Foster where he shows his indecision about whether he wants to write long form movie treA good story; the movie had its moments. This is another from Foster where he shows his indecision about whether he wants to write long form movie treatments and then scripts or tell stories with prose.
One of many pop-culture, current events books from the near to distant past that I will admit reading.
A dark sordid catty tale soaked in drugs and asOne of many pop-culture, current events books from the near to distant past that I will admit reading.
A dark sordid catty tale soaked in drugs and as nearly pure evil as can be found on the bookshelf. And it's true stuff. Having been a denizen, if for a short time and mostly as an avid voyeur,of the Limelight crowd, one knew something really bad was going to happen. Nobody gets to live at the pace that so many on display at the clubs of the period did and get out unscathed.
JStJ writes amazingly well for one who spent time so numb at the bottom of the K-hole. Dialog is always suspect and at places JStJ doesn't quite make you believe that the habitue's of this world really talked quite that well. Creative license to keep the story on track, but people at this stage of damage are often beyond this level of cohesive discourse. Then again, perhaps all they had left was the ability to tell stories. And what a story they told to keep their life over the edge going for a moment or two more.
Then Angel's body floated up in the river and the party started to thin out and crashingly end.
One or two sections aside, this is a gripping read that will keep your attention to the end. You will want to know more at the end, or maybe it is that you're glad that it finally over and done.