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Marlene Dietrich’s conflicted personal journey from Berliner to American soldier during World War II is as intense as any role she played on-screen and perhaps accounts for her ability to inspire so many through drama and song. In this collection of interviews and photographs, the many facets of Dietrich’s personality and of her life during World War II are recounted by those whose lives she touched, including Rosemary Clooney, Burt Bacharach, Cher, Hildegard Knef, and Maria Riva. Together with extensive historical documentation, these interviews help readers understand Dietrich’s inner struggles and private motivation as well as her political and social legacy. Each interview affords the reader a "mini-documentary" of the time period when that individual first came into contact with the actress. From the front lines of battle to concert halls, from film studios to Dietrich’s kitchen, we see her in many environments and gain a perspective on her character, political views, and taste for nonconformity. In stories recounted by American GI’s, studio heads, Nazi hunters, and fellow entertainers she publicly decries Nazism, helps a military journalist’s career, sings a German lullaby for an Israeli audience, and cooks a steak for a young songwriter. Many photos are included to bring the interviews to life.
Posted December 18, 2006
Absolutely essential and enjoyable reading for Dietrich fans, as well as for anyone who loves stories about classic Hollywood during the war years. The material is akin to that of Riva's earlier documentary film about Dietrich, but this book is far superior to the film, as it's more in depth. It also has a coffee-table-book feel to it--the writing style is conversational (since it's derived from interviews) and the photos are amazing to browse. This would be the perfect gift for anyone as hooked on Turner Classic Movies as me! Very highly recommended.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 15, 2006
This is an extended version of the award-winning Documentary on TCM. This book is packed with photos and interviews from such diverse sources as Rosemary Clooney, Marlene's Nephew Hans and Cher. This is a must have Christmas gift for any Ardent Marlene fan. Not to be missed!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.