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Clint Eastwood: A Biography

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  238 ratings  ·  22 reviews
"Authoritative . . . highly nuanced . . . gives the reader a palpable sense of Mr. Eastwood's career."
--The New York Times

From the moment The Man With No Name first fixed the screen with his murderous squint, from the first time audiences heard Dirty Harry Callahan growl "Make my day," Clint Eastwood has been an icon of American manhood in all its coolness and ferocity. Bu
Paperback, 570 pages
Published October 21st 1997 by Vintage (first published November 19th 1996)
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Jun 19, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: biography
This book demonstrates there is something to admire about Eastwood (namely his work ethic and relative frugality) but also something to abhor (his womanizing). He is most noted for making non-traditional westerns as opposed to the mythical westerns of John Wayne. Perhaps if he had loosened up the reigns earlier in his career as a director the way he did in "Unforgiven", and every movie thereafter, he might have created more enduring films. Unquestionably an enigmatic figure - rare for a film sta ...more
Jeppe Larsen
Aug 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
Very detailed and wordy biography. Well written by Schickel, who seems to be a friend of Eastwood so there is not much criticism of Eastwood himself, but Schickel does still voice his opinion on Eastwood movies and especially its reviewers. You might not agree with all of Schickel comments, but it makes the reading less dry.

The first part of the book deals with Eastwoods early life before his movie career, and this is where the book shines and is the most interesting. When his careers starts, th
Jul 24, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like Richard Schickel's biographical books because they are intimate yet respectful. In this biography, Schickel shines the spotlight on Clint Eastwood, one of my favorite actors and directors. The author paints a picture of a boy born in poverty grow to a teenager whose restless nature leads him to venture out. Eastwood's passion with jazz, cars and acting come through. His relationships are laid out and seen for hat they were - impetuous decisions. I love how we learn of his 'big break' in l ...more
Jun 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
Probably my best choice for anyone wanting to know how Clint Eastwood became the man he is today ranging from his upbringing to his recent past. In my opinion his range of films in both acting and directing is without peer and sometimes not given enough credit. Can you think of an actor/director with the cross section of films like The Good the Bad and the Ugly, Any Which Way But Loose, The Bridges of Madison County, Bird and In The Line of Fire...........and hes still going.
Larry Sampson
Feb 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Not the best biography. But there is a lot of detail about the making of Clint's movies. So for this fan it was a fun read. Now to find that actual biography about Clint. ...more
Aug 07, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: completed
Author Richard Schickel must've made Clint Eastwood's day. This positive biography avoid saying anything negative about the star and that is its most glaring weakness. Schickel does a great job of describing Eastwood's career and commitment to his art. The author emphasizes Eastwoods "kid gloves" approach towards actors as a director and leaves the reader convinced his is a kind and gentle man who is even-tempered MOST of the time. The star's impatience towards directors who tend to waste time a ...more
Antoni Savander
Nov 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Todella kattava historiikki yhden kautta aikojen ihailluimman ja menestyksekkäimmän näyttelijän ja ohjaajan elämästä. Napakkaa tekstiä, jossa lapsuus ja nuoruus kerrataan suht nopeasti, koska urasta on niin paljon kerrottavaa. Kirja on kirjoitettu ja julkaistu jo noin 25 vuotta sitten ja kuten tiedämme, Eastwoodin ura on jatkunut noiden vuosien ajan varsin tuotteliaana ja menestyksekkäänä. Paljon siis puuttuu, vaikka tässäkin oli jo yli 600 sivua luettavaa. Kirjan kirjoittanut Schickel onnistui ...more
Stephen Chase
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
I Really Loved This Autobiography on Mr. Eastwood. And I Also Love That He And I Back Our President. Fantastic Book About The movie Icons Life.
May 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Awesome Book. Highly Recommend It. 😇
Feb 15, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Horrible. Agonizingly slow. Word for word conversations between directors and Clint. Scene by scene. I started skipping sections to be done with it.
Roland Kermarec
Aug 03, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
D'une biographie, on attend en premier lieu qu'elle nous renseigne dans un style agréable sur la personnalté que l'on souhaite découvrir davantage. Ce fut totalement le cas ici : j'adore, comme chacun sait, Clint (à la fois l'acteur et l'homme public dans ses prises de position et dans l'image qu'il présente), et ma passion a été nourrie par le texte de Richard Schikel, par la "reconsitution" du parcours de sa carrière ou de sa vie personnelle, par les petites anecdotes sur tel ou tel tournage. ...more
Jul 31, 2012 rated it liked it
I started reading this because I know somebody who is a personal friend of Clint. But - jeez - 500 pages is more information than I need about the man, especially when some of it is Richard Schickel, a movie critic, arguing with or refuting other critics such as Pauline Kael. Just tell me about Clint Eastwood, please. The analysis of TV westerns is fascinating as is the making of the first spaghetti western in which an entire genre was invented in a collaboration/clash between Eastwood and Sergi ...more
Rafaey Ali
Jul 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
Lots of insight into Clint's long and strange life/career, and the book's best when it concentrates on recollections by Clint and those around him. gets bogged down by the excessively wordy film reviews. The author (Richard Schickel) feels the need to recap the ENTIRE spoiler-filled plot of every movie, sometimes scene-by-scene, sometimes psychoanalyzing each detail. You might consider just skipping over those parts and getting to the biography, especially for movies you haven't seen an ...more
Dec 11, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Good stories of before he became an actor. The movie topics are a bit ponderous and I felt I needed to skim parts that went too indepth. Hard to tell where author and subject- Clint- opinions and stories blended. The author seems to inject negative opinions throughout. Hard to get through but Clint has lead an interesting life so I tried to read on.
Oct 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book is pretty comprehensive. It is really more than I need to know. I admire the movies he has been in and I admire his talent. I do not admire how he treats the ladies in his life, he more or less kicks them to the curb when he done with them and this does not bother him. Good actor, not a very good person.
Elton Gsell
Mar 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is an excellent read about an icon of cinema. If you are interested in cinema or interested in Clint Eastwood, this is a must read. Very comprehensive and a joy to read.
Randolph Breschini
Jun 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Good Ol'e Clint:) ...more
Suzanne Kelly
Jan 20, 2016 rated it liked it
Finally finished this book. Interesting although I believe somewhat biased in Clint's favor. Can't have been much fun being one of the women in his life. ...more
Mar 24, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
well written, in-depth, very interesting. i am really not a non-fiction person though - i will confess that i skimmed much of it. thorough skimming though.
Carl Laamanen
Apr 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic biography of Eastwood's life. ...more
Scott McGovern
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Richard Schickel is an important American film historian, journalist, author, filmmaker, screenwriter, documentarian, and film and literary critic.

Mr.Schickel is featured in For the Love of Movies: The Story of American Film Criticism. In this 2009 documentary film he discusses early film critics in the 1960s, and how he and other young critics, rejected the moralizing opposition of Bosley Crowth

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