- Copertina flessibile: 272 pagine
- Editore: Virgin Books (4 giugno 2009)
- Lingua: Inglese
- ISBN-10: 075351950X
- ISBN-13: 978-0753519509
- Peso di spedizione: 222 g
- Posizione nella classifica Bestseller di Amazon:
Groucho and Me: The Autobiography (Inglese) Copertina flessibile – 4 giu 2009
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"The only thing the man can't do is sing, and that gave me an opening. But he can do everything else. I envy him this book, most of his wives and all of his talent" (Frank Sinatra)
"In this book, Groucho gives all - and he deserves every dime of his royalties. I'm looking forward to my percentage for this puff" (Jack Benny)
"Groucho brought the spirit of carnival to Hollywood. This book allows us to linger over the gags that went too fast on the screen" (Alistair Cooke)
Descrizione del libro
The most outrageous of the Marx brothers, in his own wordsVisualizza tutta la Descrizione prodotto
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Le recensioni clienti più utili su Amazon.com (beta)
Groucho Marx, it's been said, had a natural inborn greatness that defied analysis (but I'll still try!). There was something about his silly walk, his nasal whine, his defiance, his sudden punning broadsides, and sheer anarchic presence that just was Funny Incarnate. He is famous for a long stream of clever, provocative one-liners and for just saying such random, improvisational things onstage as "Pardon me while I have a strange interlude", or, "You're very fortunate the Theatre Guild isn't putting this on. And so is the Guild".
Just looking at those isolated lines in an Amazon.com review you already see it; this is a type of comedy that's probably not so good on paper.
Dick Cavett always says Groucho was "a great writer", but I disagree. I think Cavett's appraisal is colored by his personal fondness for his old friend, the irresistibly playful and sneaky sound of Groucho's voice, and this is what Cavett really cherishes and misses. I believe a great deal of what made Groucho funny was thus performance; unlike Peter Cook, Woody Allen, Monty Python, or Bob & Ray, whose material was funny just to read. Groucho and the Marx Brothers benefitted enormously from their writers, George S. Kaufman, Morrie Ryskind, S. J. Perelman, Arthur Sheekman, Nat Perrin, etc. Basically they provided the structure and the brothers would polish and embellish. It's possible that Groucho's, dare I say it, shortcomings, are less noticeable in the Marx Brothers' many wonderful movies; flanked as he was by brother Chico's malapropisms, illogic, and crazy piano playing, plus Harpo's madcap pantomime and harp playing. The Marx Brothers as a unit are as strong and entertaining a comedy team as I could possibly imagine. Their originality and talent remain stunning, their mark on comedy history of course indelible. But on his own, Groucho always seemed too meandering, which is what Steve Allen might have been getting at (in his book Funny People's chapter on Groucho) about not considering Groucho's own "act" as being very strong. There is some truth to it; after the Marx Brothers amicably broke up Groucho never even tried to be a regular stand-up comic in nightclubs, which was wise. He was clearly at his very best in impromptu conversation, something his producers on You Bet Your Life seemed to know better than Groucho himself.
Ultimately he's a good writer because he's charming. The reason he isn't a great writer is his disregard of structure. That's why The GrouchoPhile, his later autobiography, is so much better; the structure. And, tellingly, it was written by Groucho and Someone Else.
Groucho and Me, by contrast, is good but not great. Still, I love and cherish my 1960 paperback copy of it...because it's got that iconic Groucho Marx rolled-eye, chin-on-fist-holding-cigar-pose and a facsimile of his signature on the cover. Pathetic fan-boy that I am. ☺
If you're a Groucho fan you'll really enjoy this book. Once started, it's hard to put down until finished.