Friday, January 27, 2017

Young Frankenstein: A Mel Brooks Book: The Story of the Making of the Film (Mel Brooks)

Young Frankenstein: A Mel Brooks Book: The Story of the Making of the Film
Mel Brooks with Rebecca Keegan
Black Dog and Leventhal
Nonfiction, Media Reference
***+ (Okay/Good)

DESCRIPTION: While filming the soon-to-be-hit Western comedy Blazing Saddles, director Mel Brooks and star Gene Wilder began collaboration on a quirky idea of Gene's, the tale of a descendant of the infamous Victor Frankenstein who finds himself following in the man's foosteps by building his own monster. Young Frankenstein would achieve classic status, making its stars into household names almost overnight. Here, Brooks relates tales of the cast and crew and the making of his favorite movie.

REVIEW: Young Frankenstein is, indeed, a classic movie. One doesn't even have to be intimately familiar with the old black-and-white movies it honored and parodied in order to understand it, though the more one knows, the more one sees. It's a perfect blend of comedy and story, craft and kismet. This collection of memories and photos explores behind the scenes, from first inception to the premiere, via Brooks's recollections and clips from articles and interviews. It reads fast and is reasonably interesting, though not especially deep. I clipped it a half-star for the formatting of the e-book version, which tries too hard to replicate a printed book; the end result has lots of empty white space, poor and sometimes incomplete or cropped photo captions, and other issues that grew irritating even for a short title like this one. If you're a fan of the movie, though, it's worth a read.

You Might Also Enjoy:
Extreme Science (Phil Clarke) - My Review
Frankenstein (Mary Wollstonecraft Shelly) - My Review
Young Frankenstein (Special Edition) - Amazon DVD link

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