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Dear Boris: The Life of William Henry Pratt A.K.A. Boris Karloff [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

Marian Anderson , Cynthia Linday , Cynthia Lindsay
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  • Taschenbuch: 273 Seiten
  • Verlag: Proscenium Publ/Limelight; Auflage: Limelight. (1. Juni 1995)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0879101067
  • ISBN-13: 978-0879101060
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 23 x 20 x 2 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 711.638 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Today, Boris Karloff is known principally for his portrayal of the Frankenstein monster and his narration of the television special How the Grinch Stole Christmas. He was, in fact, an amazingly talented actor whose characteristic lisp never kept him from playing a great variety of parts. Author Cynthia Lindsay was a personal friend of Karloff's for more than 30 years. As she tells the story of his life, she not only brings forth the consummate professional who felt that to act was to live but also describes Karloff as an extraordinarily warm and genteel man, the antithesis of the roles he is most famous for. A full filmography and hundreds of photographs are included in this loving biography.


He scares us witless, and he won our hearts. He was Frankenstein's monster, rising to stardom encased in sixty-five pounds of putty and padding. No matter how horrific the roles, he made them as vulnerable -- almost human -- as they were frightening, and softened our fear even as he sparked it. He was Boris Karloff: The epitome of horror, one of Hollywood's greatest and most productive stars. But Boris Karloff himself -- private, even secretive -- eluded his biographers and his fans. Now one of his closest friends has given us a book that finally reveals the fascinating and complex man behind the screen image, one whose nature was completely at odds with the roles that made him famous, and who was always 'dear Boris' to those who knew him best. -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.

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4.0 von 5 Sternen Behind the "Man behind the Monster(s)" 3. Januar 2005
Von Polygraph
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
Diese reich bebilderte Biographie wurde von einer langjährigen Freundin Boris Karloffs geschrieben und ist wohl der einzige Versuch, das Leben des berühmtesten Gruselfilmschauspielers aller Zeiten zu beleuchten.
Ein Versuch Licht ins Dunkle zu bringen trifft die Absicht des Buches wohl am Besten, denn obwohl die Autorin Karloff persönlich gekannt und geschätzt hat, kommt sie im Verlauf des Buches sehr oft zu dem Schluss, dass er doch etwas distanzierter war, als sie früher angenommen hat und dass sich vielleicht doch nicht so gut kannten.
Trotzdem, und obwohl einiges in der Vita Karloffs rekonstruierte Spekulation der Autorin ist (die Jugend, Emigration nach Amerika etc.) bleibt die Biographie interessant und gut zu lesen.
Boris Karloffs Aufstieg vom Bühnenschauspieler (als er noch William Henry Pratt hiess), erste Auftritte in Stumm- und Gangsterfilmen bis zum Durchbruch in „Frankenstein" werden hier beschrieben und wo immer es geht mit Fotos dokumentiert. Ein weiterer Vorzug besteht darin, dass es der Autorin sehr gut gelingt, die Welt des Films und des Theaters zu beschreiben, als es noch in den Kinderschuhen steckte (oder wie sie es beschreibt: Als Regisseure tatsächlich vor der Aufnahme noch „Action" brüllten), so dass man es sich streckenweise wirklich bildlich vorstellen kann. Viele Beschreibungen und Anekdoten z.B. wie die Maske für Frankensteins Monster im einzelnen entstandt und nicht zuletzt die vielen Photos (Karloff hatte schon auf seinem Einschulphoto einen „monströsen" Gesichtsausdruck) die Biographie spannend und kurzweilig zu lesen.
Am eindrucksvollsten bleibt jedoch die komplette(!
Lesen Sie weiter... ›
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5.0 von 5 Sternen A tender and insightful look into a craftsman's life. 18. Juni 1998
Von jremingt@pendleton.k12.or.us - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
William Henry Pratt aka Boris Karloff was perhaps one of the most underated and illused actors in film history. Cynthia Lyndsay's book provides a most personal and loving journey into this gentleman's life. Included too in her portrait is a concise history of acting in the early 20th century as well as a detailed portrait of the actor's craft. Karloff was the consumate professional on stage and screen and off. This book is highly reccomended for any interested in the craft of acting.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen A wonderful portrait of a man who happened to be a star 13. Januar 2013
Von M2 - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Many books have been written about Boris Karloff, some perfunctory, some exhaustive, but probably none can match Cynthia Lindsay's "Dear Boris" in terms of presenting the iconic actor as a human being. Lindsay was a longtime friend of Karloff's, which gives her special insight into him, but she has also done a great deal of research into his life, which was not easy, since he obscured so much of his personal history for still enigmatic reasons. Karloff was the youngest son of a rather harsh Anglo-Indian family, and was expected to follow in the "family business" of diplomacy, but instead went rogue and became an actor. He struggled for decades until achieving stardom in "Frankenstein," but never let that stardom go to his head. Yet he remained a somewhat mysterious figure, never revealing too much about himself, and blithely sailing through any attempts at biography in his lifetime with a ready wit and a host of prepared stories. In real life a kind and gentle man, as opposed to his roles, he was nonetheless a tartar when it came to fighting for his own and fellow actors' rights, having helped to establish the Screen Actors Guild, and remaining a driving force in the union for decades. Cynthia Lindsay creates a full picture of the man--at least as full as was possible, given his dedication to privacy--and "Dear Boris" remains an essential work for Karloff fans.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Boris We Hardly Knew Ya 15. Juni 2012
Von john watson bruce - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
What a wonderful caring,compassionate man,who cared deeply for his fellow actors.It didn't matter if they were stars or bit players he would defend them to the end.He cites his good fortune as "standing at the right corner at the right time". That might be a small part of it but he was a very talented actor.Not to forget his family and his marriages and the joy of his life his daughter Sarah[though their relationship became estranged because of divorcing her mom and his work load] and the monster who made Karloff a household name. It is a very enjoyable read you will like it written by a family friend and fellow actress.
4.0 von 5 Sternen Touching Look At Karloff 24. Februar 2014
Von Agatha Christie - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
It's rare that a 1975 book is still being published and available at B&N. However, this is a good book that essentially looks at the life of Boris Karloff through anecdotes, personal recollections from friends, associates, family, and the author herself.
While not a particularly critical book, this shows Karloff as a friend and an actor. While married several times, it looks primarily at his last marriage and offers little up as to the failure of his forth marriage which produced his only child Sara and their cordial but oddly distant relationship.
What appealed to me about the Karloff seen in this book was the kindly and generous man who was a good friend and liked by many people. The most telling thing was that children confronted by a threatening Karloff in full makeup could see through the facade and warmed up to him immediately.
This was an oddly charming recollection of a great horror film actor. I particularly liked the anecdotes about Boris.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen A Biography by A Friend 31. Juli 2009
Von Acute Observer - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Cynthia Lindsay was born in Great Neck NY and moved to California for school. She worked as a swimmer, skater, actress, and author. She was in "Footlight Parade" (p.83). Boris Karloff was a close and beloved friend, his daughter is her godchild (p.ix). Boris was a passionate gardner. "Dear Boris" was what his friends called him. Researching Boris' life was difficult, family records were destroyed in the London Blitz. Boris migrated from England to Canada in 1909 at age 21, the records of this era are lost (p.xi). But she found sources from fans and Boris' widow. Boris kept working until he died, he never wanted to retire (p.175). He died in February 1969 and had a small private funeral (p.177).

William Henry Pratt was the youngest of a large family (p.2). A legacy allowed Boris to migrate to Canada (p.11). He worked as a laborer until he joined a stock company (p.15). He picked "Boris Karloff" as a stage name. After a few years with stock companies he went to Hollywood and worked as an extra (p.27). Boris kept his secrets (p.33). Little is known about his 2 or 3 marriages in the 1920s (p.37). Boris' part in "Frankenstein" made him famous (Chapter 10), he was a character actor for years. "Many children's fairy tales are far more frightening that `Frankenstein'" (p.64). Boris felt sorry for Bela Lugosi (p.71). [Two exclamation points represent rabbit tracks - page 75.] Cynthia tells how she met Boris, and about life in the 1930s. Boris was an early supporter of the Screen Actor's Guild (pp.90-97). Boris "sang" in "Charlie Chan at the Opera" (p.101).

The remaining chapters cover Boris' life on stage and on screen. He was liked by many but kept his secrets. His daughter Sara learned of his death from the news on TV (p.141). Boris appeared on TV shows in the 1950s. In his last years he suffered from emphysema and arthritis (p.150). But he still worked. "Targets" was his last American film (Chapter 21). Boris played an old horror movie actor who earned a living by guest appearances. It was stitched together from left-overs (p.168), like Frankenstein's Monster. It is a low-budget message movie that wasn't as successful as "The Night of the Living Dead". This is followed by photos for Boris from his many films from 1916 to 1972, and a catalog of the films (pp.235-273). Note how many times he played a villain in his early films.
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