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Easy Riders Raging Bulls: How the Sex-Drugs-And Rock 'N Roll Generation Save (English Edition) [Format Kindle]

Peter Biskind

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

Mark Harris Entertainment Weekly Peter Biskind's great, scathing, news-packed history...is one hell of an elixir -- salty with flavorsome gossip, sour with the aftertaste of misspent careers, intoxicating with one revelation after another,...an "A."

Dennis Drabelle The Washington Post Book World Biskind's devourable book is that rarity, a Hollywood exposé that you can read mouth agape, slurping up scandal and titillation so fast you're in danger of choking -- without feeling ashamed of yourself.

Brian Gunn San Francisco Chronicle Biskind is a magician at prying revealing yarns and juicy quotes out of his subjects. And the resulting scenarios are deliciously tawdry...moments of real intelligence and grace.

Présentation de l'éditeur

In 1969, a low-budget biker movie, Easy Rider, shocked Hollywood with its stunning success. An unabashed celebration of sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll (onscreen and off), Easy Rider heralded a heady decade in which a rebellious wave of talented young filmmakers invigorated the movie industry. In Easy Riders, Raging Bulls, Peter Biskind takes us on the wild ride that was Hollywood in the '70s, an era that produced such modern classics as The Godfather, Chinatown, Shampoo, Nashville, Taxi Driver, and Jaws.

Easy Riders, Raging Bulls vividly chronicles the exuberance and excess of the times: the startling success of Easy Rider and the equally alarming circumstances under which it was made, with drugs, booze, and violent rivalry between costars Dennis Hopper and Peter Fonda dominating the set; how a small production company named BBS became the guiding spirit of the youth rebellion in Hollywood and how, along the way, some of its executives helped smuggle Huey Newton out of the country; how director Hal Ashby was busted for drugs and thrown in jail in Toronto; why Martin Scorsese attended the Academy Awards with an FBI escort when Taxi Driver was nominated; how George Lucas, gripped by anxiety, compulsively cut off his own hair while writing Star Wars, how a modest house on Nicholas Beach occupied by actresses Margot Kidder and Jennifer Salt became the unofficial headquarters for the New Hollywood; how Billy Friedkin tried to humiliate Paramount boss Barry Diller; and how screenwriter/director Paul Schrader played Russian roulette in his hot tub. It was a time when an "anything goes" experimentation prevailed both on the screen and off.

After the success of Easy Rider, young film-school graduates suddenly found themselves in demand, and directors such as Francis Coppola, Peter Bogdanovich, George Lucas, and Martin Scorsese became powerful figures. Even the new generation of film stars -- Nicholson, De Niro, Hoffman, Pacino, and Dunaway -- seemed a breed apart from the traditional Hollywood actors. Ironically, the renaissance would come to an end with Jaws and Star Wars, hugely successful films that would create a blockbuster mentality and crush innovation.

Based on hundreds of interviews with the directors themselves, producers, stars, agents, writers, studio executives, spouses, and ex-spouses, this is the full, candid story of Hollywood's last golden age. Never before have so many celebrities talked so frankly about one another and about the drugs, sex, and money that made so many of them crash and burn.

By turns hilarious and shocking, Easy Riders, Raging Bulls is the ultimate behind-the-scenes account of Hollywood at work and play.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 4447 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 512 pages
  • Editeur : Simon & Schuster; Édition : 1st Touchstone Ed (13 décembre 2011)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B005Z37BNQ
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  • Composition améliorée: Activé
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°146.773 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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Amazon.com: 4.1 étoiles sur 5  130 commentaires
23 internautes sur 25 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Scandalously fascinating insight into 70s Hollywood.... 29 novembre 2000
Par GZA - Publié sur Amazon.com
This book is a terrific read: an amazingly revealing insight into the workings of the Hollywood machine and a convincing explanation of why the film industry is the way it is today. Fascinating for any film fan but truly essential for those particularly interested in Coppola, Scorcese, Altman and the other enfants terribles of the 70s. I learned more than I ever thought I would about the strange habits, curious peccadilloes and psychological frailties of these legendary directors and producers. Seminal figures such as Dennis Hopper, William Friedkin, Peter Bogdanovich and Scorsese all come across as frighteningly deranged, emphasising the fine line that separates genius from insanity - and many of these characters clearly ended up on the wrong side of the divide. One of Biskind's great strengths is that he seeks to portray all sides of the story, and it's hard not to believe the majority of what is reported simply for the fact that if wasn't true you can bet your life that lawsuits would have stopped publication in its tracks.
The spirit of the times engendered by the rise of the anti-Vietnam, hippy counterculture, generated a climate where a new form of creativity was allowed to enter the mainstream for the first time. This produced a fabulous glut of films - Bonnie and Clyde, The Godfather, The Exorcist, Taxi Driver, The Deerhunter, Star Wars, MASH and dozens of others. Biskind's belief is that the rise of the super director destroyed this astounding period in Hollywood history - egos and pay checks became so over inflated that eventually the studios realised that they had to seize back control. As a result the industry more or less stopped producing original pictures and opted for the safe bet of formulaic blockbusters which were more likely to draw big crowds - through excessive marketing and merchandising campaigns and extravagant special effects.
Biskind's style is compelling and the anectdotal evidence at times hilarious, at others horrific (Peter Bogdanovich's fall from grace is particularly gruesome). `Easy Riders Raging Bulls' must be one of the best books yet written about Hollywood and one of the best non-fiction books I have read in many years.
8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Those Who Do Not Learn From History... 11 octobre 2001
Par Kathy Fennessy - Publié sur Amazon.com
In Easy Riders, Raging Bulls, Peter Biskind puts the filmmaking of the 1970s in perspective in a way that wouldn't have been possible in the 1980s (or even early-'90s). Aside from the fascinating stories behind the most significant films of the era, like The Last Picture Show or The Exorcist, he sheds light on the state of filmmaking today. The current movie landscape--for better or worse--wouldn't look the way it does if not for those award-winning blockbusters or for the high profile flops like Daisy Miller and Sorcerer...which just happened to have been made by the same people. Peter Bogdanovich (The Cat's Meow) and William Friedkin (Rules of Engagement) are only just starting to recover from the turbulent era in which they experienced their greatest triumphs and most resounding defeats. Biskind gives lesser known filmmakers, like the late, great Hal Ashby (Harold and Maude), their due, as well.

Those looking for the definitive book on the filmmaking of the 1970s should be forewarned that this is mostly an overview of an era and doesn't cover every picture or every director, but it's a compulsively readable account of a time we aren't likely to see again. At his worst--and as many have already noted--Biskind can be more gossipy than necessary, but that may just draw in those movie fans who've never actually picked up a book about filmmaking before. Maybe it could even lead them to pick up Andrew Sarris' classic American Cinema next (or the other side of the coin: Kenneth Anger's Hollywood Babylon series).

One way or the other, Easy Riders, Raging Bulls is a worthy addition to Stephen Bach's Final Cut (about the making of Heaven's Gate...and unmaking of United Artists) and David McClintick's Indecent Exposure (about former Columbia prexy David Begelman's fall from Hollywood grace) in revealing the human beings--and the human cost--that helped to shape what is now seen as a high water mark in cinema history. Just ask Quentin Tarantino or P.T. Anderson.
6 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A sad loss of paradise in Hollywood. 20 août 1999
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
"...But it should have been perfect [but] in the end, we f***ed it all up. It should have been so sweet too, but it turned out to be the last time that street guys like us were ever given something that f***in' valuable again".
-Nicky Santoro in the film, "Casino".
A common thread in some of Martin Scorsese's films is the "loss of paradise" theme. How cool was the gangster world of "Goodfellas" before Henry Hill screwed it up by dealing with drugs? Or how cool was Saul Rothstein's world in Vegas before he screwed it up by marrying a scam artist?
In both of these films the chararacters were given the world and in the end the messed it all up. Have you ever wondered why Mr. Scorsese might have gravitated towards these themes? Well, after reading Peter Biskind's "Easy Riders, Raging Bull", I think you might find the answer.
It's a fascinating read about how, for a brief moment, Hollywood went loopy and handed over it's power to the street guys, the directors. Scorsese, Hopper, Beatty, Lucas, Spielberg, Coppola, Friedkin, etc. They became the town's "White Knights" and saved Hollywood from literally going senile.
Now, I don't know how many of the book's stories are actually true, but what the hell! It's a fun - lurid read! The only drawback is the depressing ending, which, of course, is how the young innovative directors scewed up and were never given something so valuable, as running Hollywood, again.
17 internautes sur 21 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
1.0 étoiles sur 5 Too easy and a lot of bull 16 août 2012
Par JLR - Publié sur Amazon.com
Good Lord, is this book overrated?

Peter Biskind's EASY RIDERS, RAGING BULLS is a perfect example on how NOT to write about movie history. In this case, it's the period between 1968-1980; a decade when directors like Spielberg, Scorsese, Altman and Coppola became powerful figures in the movie industry, releasing classics like "Jaws" (1975), "Taxi Driver" (1976), "Nashville" (1975) and "The Godfather" (1972). Biskind makes an effort to comprehend the entire decade in the span of 430-435 pages and fails miserably.

Throughout the entire book, Biskind makes one flawed argument after another, making generalizations about the state of movies by focusing on only a small section of what was released at the time. For instance, Biskind makes a romantic hyperbole that the movies of the 1970s became successful because audiences were part of the Cahiers du Cinema crowd that desired for watch tougher and more challenging fare. Wrong. As David A. Cook's terrific book, LOST ILLUSIONS, illustrates, the top stars of that decade were not method actors like Al Pacino, Dustin Hoffman or Robert De Niro, but action heroes like Burt Reynolds, Clint Eastwood, Sylvester Stallone and Robert Redford. Some of the most successful movies of that decade were not artistic statements like "McCabe & Mrs. Miller" (1971) or "Amarcord" (1974), but movies that were either modeled after the exploitation circuit ("The Texas Chainsaw Massacre"; "The Rocky Horror Picture Show"; "The Omen"; "The Exorcist"), star-studded Hollywood epics ("Airport"; "The Poseidon Adventure"; "Earthquake"; "The Towering Inferno") or violent action movies ("The Godfather"; "Death Wish"; "Deliverance"; "Billy Jack"; "The Getaway"; the Dirty Harry and James Bond movies). Sensation, not artistry, was the rule, then as now. Moviegoers may admire De Niro for putting on 25-30 pounds but chances are they would rather watch Eastwood blow away bad guys than hear De Niro recite a line from "On the Waterfront" (1954).

When Biskind is not making generalizations, he irrationally points fingers at those that he feels were responsible for closing the door on European and artistically inclined American movies. In the last third of the book, Spielberg and George Lucas are vilified as the culprits that helped pave the way of the blockbuster mentality, but readers never get the sense that many of the top domestic hits of the early-to-mid 1970s were, in fact, disaster and Hollywood epics that were critically reviled and heavily promoted by studios; to speak little of the many lousy exploitation and horror movies that were generating revenue at the time. By the end of the book, Biskind asserts that American cinema is the worst state it has ever been, which means that despite the presence of American movies made by David Lynch, Quentin Tarantino, the Coen Brothers, Lawrence Kasdan, Oliver Stone and John Sayles, American movies have sucked since "Star Wars". Lord.

And for a book that claims to be a comprehensive account on the 1970s, there is a truckload of errors all over the place. In one glaring example, Biskind writes that "up to 1975, no picture cost more than $15 million". Gee, I didn't know movies like "Ben-Hur" (1959), "Cleopatra" (1963), "War and Peace" (1966-1967) and "Lawrence of Arabia" (1962) cost less than that. He wrongly asserts that before Warren Beatty, there was little to zero precedent for an actor to produce a picture (uh, hello? Charles Chaplin, anyone?). He writes that film critic Pauline Kael was a patron saint for New Hollywood directors, ignoring the fact that Kael disliked not only some of the American classics of the 1960s-1970s ("The Graduate", "Dirty Harry", "Coming Home", "Raging Bull", "Days of Heaven", "Apocalypse Now", "Barry Lyndon", "Deliverance", "The Sting", "American Graffiti", "Little Big Man", "Serpico", "Network", "A Clockwork Orange", "The Ballad of Cable Hogue", "Blazing Saddles", "Annie Hall"), but also movies that had a huge influence on 1970s directors such as "It's a Wonderful Life" (1946), "8 1/2" (1962), "The Searchers" (1956), "Vertigo" (1958), "Dr. Strangelove" (1964), "2001: A Space Odyssey" (1968), "Last Year at Marienbad" (1961) and the movies made by Cassavetes, Antonioni and Ozu. And in one glaring oversight, Biskind scarcely mentions the careers of Sam Peckinpah, Arthur Penn and Brian De Palma, three directors that helped bring graphic violence to the mainstream movies.

But perhaps the book's greatest flaw, and one that will date this book in retrospect, is that Biskind reduces certain movies to a set of ideological symptoms, in that Biskind believes that the greatness and reason for movies' popularity is how they reflected the American politics of their time and the future. For example, Biskind writes that "The Godfather" hit a cultural nerve because it presented a premise that the American dream was an illusion and that Mafia provides better justice than the government. Nice try. No one who watched "The Godfather" at the time liked it due to the fact that it reflected the Nixon era. Serious moviegoers may study Gordon Willis' shadowy cinematography as a visual metaphor of corrupt America but virtually everyone else will clamor more on how Al Pacino blew that police officer's head off in the famous restaurant scene. Similarly, anyone who saw "Bonnie and Clyde" (1967) in its initial release was more invigorated by the gory violence than the fact that it reflected counterculture sentiment.

And, my personal favorite, Biskind writes that movies like "The Godfather", "The Exorcist", "Jaws", "Star Wars" (1977) and "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" (1977) somehow made the world safe for Reagan, although even a serious film scholar will wonder how in the world a gangster movie in 1972, a horror movie in 1973, a thriller in 1975 and two science-fiction movies in 1977, all made by liberal filmmakers, could have predicted the arrival of a right-wing administration in 1980?

It's one thing to say that Scorsese, Coppola and Altman made great movies (they did); it's another to say that movies were made during a time when audiences were on the side of the artists. That time has never existed. Before "Jaws", before "Star Wars", before "Rocky", audiences were flocking to see "Death Wish", "Billy Jack", "Airport", "Earthquake" and "Magnum Force". There's been good movies and bad movies and bad movies have always made more money than the good ones. This has always been the case before "Star Wars" and after "Star Wars". For every "Raging Bull" and "There Will Be Blood", there'll always be a ""Death Wish III" or "Transformers 2".

Anyone who wants a better overview of the 1970s American cinema is well-advised to pick up David Cook's LOST ILLUSIONS, which covers greater ground and is refreshingly free of the shallow writing found on this dreck. EASY RIDERS, on the other hand, should only be used as a doorstep or a fly swatter. Reading this book is strongly unadvised.

Strongest recommendation to avoid.
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Mmm, feel that American Culture Disseection! 23 novembre 2005
Par Another Matt - Publié sur Amazon.com
I just picked up Biskind's book to read again. I remember being so enthralled, invigorated by ever individual page that first time. It feels so distant now, but I still remember the descriptive portraits; it was certainly as alive as the best work of his subjects.

The actual writing in the book is so clean and well-written, so...orderly, that even sour information would have been instantly forgotten thanks to the consistantly exciting prose.

Fortunately for the reader however, the information is beyond interesting, beyond fun. The stories and portraits stand as the best reflections towards the era, the best chronicles of the age of decadence on celluloid. Giving it a bit of thought, this decade was the first time where the chronicles of the times were on film as much as on screen. Because real people were making these movies, and they were permitted to show and say anything they wished to, there became a kind of id factor. It existed with the novels of the lost generation, or the writings of the beat generation, or French Impressionism in painting, but now you could see the work...the age of information could present it in as intimate detail as the physical world would allow. That being said, this is a better chronicle of those times than the filmed documentaries (A Decade Under the Influence, the BBC doc based off of this book) because it pulls back from the times - feeling like a recently written book - to aim for an objective look at the tumultuous time. The people who step into becoming major figures in this book: Jack Nicholson, Robert Altman, Robert Towne, Hal Ashby, Julie Christie, Warren Beatty, Francis Ford Coppola, Bert Schneider, Peter Bogdanovich, Marty Scorsese, then later Spielberg, Lucas, Harrison Ford, etc, all come into their own as massive cultural characters making massive cultural statements. Revealed quickly is the depths and shallows of these people and their movies. Without actually providing real text, this little write-up is more of a tribute than a review, but that's my point: once you hit just a single paragraph of this, it'll only be a matter of time before the book receives another five-star review on this website.
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