A Girl’s Got to Breathe: The Life of Teresa Wright

I’m kicking off a new year of classic film biographies and you can’t start with an author better than Donald Spoto. The acclaimed Hitchcock biographer has covered nearly every facet of the Master of Suspense’s life and career, including the women he employed. Spoto’s also recounted the lives of Hollywood’s most beautiful women, like Audrey…

The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe

J. Randy Taraborelli’s biography of Marilyn Monroe has made a home on my bookshelf for at least three¬†years. After the airing of Lifetime’s surprisingly exemplary adaptation of it – which I reviewed – I figured now was the time to actually crack that binding. There are as many Marilyn Monroe biographies as their are films…

Room 1219: The Life of Fatty Arbuckle, the Mysterious Death of Virginia Rappe, and the Scandal That Changed Hollywood

Synonymous with infamy, Roscoe Arbuckle, otherwise known as “Fatty” Arbuckle, is a figurehead for the ushering in of the Hollywood Production Code and the perils of fame. Several books have capitalized on the lurid events that presumably happened in Room 1219 of the St. Francis Hotel over Labor Day weekend in 1921; Greg Merritt’s Room…

Doris Day: The Untold Story of the Girl Next Door

Doris Day is an interesting figure in classic cinema. Appointed as the personification of the 1950s cult of domesticity, Day’s career and work as an actress has her labeled as chaste and wholesome, her movies indicative of an oppressive standard for women. In watching her films, and as deconstructed in David Kaufman’s biography, these suppositions…

I Am Not Ashamed

Celebrity biographies fall into two camps: the cash grab and the record straightener. The latter sees a celebrity take the time to truly present themselves, while the former is written in the vain hope of nabbing a few bucks and some headlines. Suffice it to say you can usually tell the two apart. That’s not…

Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow: My Life

An actress so gorgeous walking down the street cemented her status as an A-list actress it’s remarkable how humble an actress like Sophia Loren is. In most autobiographies humility sounds artificial but Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow: My Life forsakes the humble brag mentality in favor of a lyrical trip down memory lane filled with heart, of…