John's Reviews > John Wayne's America: The Politics of Celebrity

John Wayne's America by Garry Wills
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's review
Oct 30, 2010

really liked it

Wayne's movie persona is detailed. The book is not so much a biography per se but of how he was shaped by first-rate directors, namely Raoul Walsh, John Ford and Howard Hawks. Movies that Wayne both directed and acted in turned out not so good -- The Alamo compounded an already large historical myth and Green Berets, though a commercial success, was widely ridiculed by critics. Wayne's later successes (True Grit and Big Jake) came amid clinkers and absurdities, but overall he was the epitome of the American frontier spirit.

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