Barry Hammond's Reviews > Dropped Names: Famous Men and Women As I Knew Them

Dropped Names by Frank Langella
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's review
Jul 03, 2012

really liked it
Read from June 25 to July 03, 2012

I hope this memoir of famous people was a prelude to an autobiography by Frank Langella. While this book focuses on other people, you do find out a little about him in relation to these famous names and the parts I learned left me being even more curious about him. Still, his opinions and observations of the celebrities here are sometimes surprising, usually revealing, and always shrewdly insightful. As an actor, you expect him to understand motivation and behavior but he's also very articulate in getting it down on paper. There isn't one of these people I didn't feel I knew better after reading his take on them. It's a wide range, too, covering the stage and screen world with the likes of Laurence Olivier, Richard Burton, Raul Julia, Paul Newman, Oliver Reed, Anthony Quinn, Robert Mitchum, Bette Davis and many others to society and politics with John F. Kennedy, The Queen Mother, Rachel "Bunny Mellon and so on. He doesn't pull any punches either. If he didn't like someone or they didn't like him, you hear about it. There's gossip for those who like it, but more: piercing perception of the human condition. A definite must-read. - BH.

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