To avoid fainting, keep repeating it's only a move ..only a movie ..only a movie ..only a movie
If you grew up believing that Planet of the Apes told you all you needed to know about politics, that Slade in Flame was a savage exposé of the pop world, and that The Exorcist revealed the meaning of life, then you probably spent far too many of your formative years at the cinema. Just as likely, you soon would have realised that there was only one career open to you - you'd have to become a film critic.
In It’s only a Movie, the incomparable Mark Kermode takes us into the weird world of a life lived in widescreen. Join him as he embarks on a gut-wrenching journey through the former Soviet Union on the trail of the low budget horror flick Dark Waters, cringe as he's handbagged by Helen Mirren at the Bafta awards ceremony, cheer as he gets thrown out of the Cannes film festival for heckling in very bad French, and don't forget to gasp as he's shot at while interviewing Werner Herzog in the Hollywood hills.
Written with sardonic wit and wry good humour, this compelling cinematic memoir is genuinely ‘inspired by real events’.
©2010 Mark Kermode (P)2010 Random House Audio
I noticed this because of the cover, but the audio sample hooked me. I loved this book. Mark Kermode, who also does a BBC show that you can find in podcast about movies, writes and narrates this. I had no idea who he was before this, but after listening, I'm a big admirer.
He talks a lot about a variety of movies: The Exorcist, Mama Mia, Blue Velvet, The Queen, Breaking the Waves, Silent Running, Hellraiser, Local Hero, Texas Chainsaw Massacre II, The Evil Dead, and others with funny observations and personal notes.
The funniest parts are his first time on the radio, his ill-fated trip to newly capitalized Russia and his trip to the US to interview his favorite celebrities.
If you appreciate movies, especially cult or horror movies, you'll like this book.
Because of this book, I now subscribe to the Kermode and Mayo podcast, which updates every Friday with interviews and usually funny movie reviews.
The best part of the book is definitely the story of Werner Herzog getting shot, which a brief google search will give you footage of.
Rabbi Steve the Storyteller
If one can get past the laughs (not easy, because there are so many), this not only an amusing autobiographical piece of storytelling, but a deep love story: a love story about a man an his muse - movies.
Kermode reads his own writing the same way he speaks on the BBC: with wit, self-deprecating humor, but also with his passion for all things cinema.
I will have to listen to it more than once, because, frankly, I was often laughing too hard to get all the details of this audio "movie" "inspired by true events", directed, produced, written, scored and read by the Professor.
Highest recommendation - and check out his podcasts, both with & w/o Simon Mayo. Yes, you'll be addicted, but it's worth the monkey(s) on your back & every minute of your time, and every megabyte of storage & bandwidth.
"As slick as his hair"
Within the first 15 minutes of this title I knew I was going to love it and want to listen to it many times. Mark Kermode is a natural narrator (not always the case with celeb self-read autobiographies) and words, concepts, conceits, comedy all tumble out in an engaging and affable torrent. Listen to the sample and you will see what I mean, buy the book and you won?t regret it.
"Witertainment at its very best!"
I loved it! Mark Kermode is sharp and witty and does a great job of reading his own text. It has laugh out loud moments but also has serious points he wants to make about films and the media. I love dipping into it when I need a pick-me-up after a bad day.
Sorry for the cheesy title. I couldn't resist. This is just delightful, I adore Mark Kermode's writing style. Both his books are sort of autobiographical, in a charming way. It's really a series of stories about his life as a movie journalist. Some of the anecdotes are very funny, and it's never dull.
If you are a fan of his radio 5 show, I think you need to read his books as there are references that will enrich your listening experience!
"Very good, a real treat for movie buffs"
I enjoy listening to Marks movie review pod casts so thought I would try this audio book. I was not disappointed by it. It had all the quirky movie antidotes I expected and some personal stories from Mark. All in all very enjoyable for a movie buff like me.
"Some amusing stories, but not much else"
This is a pretty strange book, being neither an in depth study of film or a detailed autobiography of Kermode's life. Instead it flits about through Kermode's experiences with various film makers and minor celebrities. Some of the stories are interesting (such as Kermode's terrifying trip through Russia during the soviet years), while others are pretty pointless.
Kermode himself reads the book as you would expect, and sounds fine, just as he does on Radio 5.
Mildly entertaining then, but you'd probably do just as well downloading the Kermode/Mayo podcast from the BBC.
Mark Kermode is a top class film critic and he also has a great sense of humour, the bottom line is if you want to know whether a film is worth watching or not, Mark is the guy to rely on!
"Hello to Jason Isaacs"
A must for Wittertainees. Quite interesting for everyone else. Oh, this needs to be at least twenty words. There.
"Energentic, Self Deprecating , Insightful"
The good Doctor Kermode gives his memoires in a style which is engaging and interesting. His story of falling into various roles through, sheer chutzpah and his development as a writer and broadcaster is delivered through bouts of self deprecation and disbelief. Always an entertaining listen, it contains the usual memoire fillings of characters both positive and negative he has encountered en route. Altogether a great listen. But then I am a happy member of the church of wittertainment
"Don't listen to this while drinking milk"
This was really funny, very quirky and brilliantly read by Kermode himself. It didn't feel so much like a book being read as a 7 hour stand up routine.
My son listened to the Werner Herzog section in the car along with me and his jaw just kept dropping lower with each new crazy moment.
"Brilliant, even without the Mayo"
Smug, Blagging, Chancer
I don't read/listen to a lot of autobiographies, but I found this tale of bravado, chutzpah and sheer luck to be enjoyably fluffy, in comparison to Stephen Fry's more angsty and ernest (but brilliant) Moab is My Washpot.
Well I regularly hear him on Radio 5. The key difference here is the absence of Simon Mayo, which genuinely made me think twice about whether I could cope with 7 hours of just Mark. Obviously the vibe is different, but actually Mark is a very entertaining presence, even on his own.
Laugh, several times.
A fascinating chronicle of how one of the UK's leading film critics got to the top, mostly through blagging and chancing it!
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