Stacy Keach is known for movie roles like Fat City, American History X, the television series Titus, and of course Mike Hammer, but he's also revered in the industry as a serious actor who's passionate about his craft. In his long, impressive career, he has been hailed as America's finest classical stage actor, earning acclaim for his portrayals of Hamlet, Macbeth, Richard III, and King Lear. He has worked alongside and become friends with the giants of American culture, from Joseph Papp to George C. Scott, from James Earl Jones to Oliver Stone.
Keach's memoir begins with the riveting account of his arrest in London for cocaine possession. He takes listeners through his trial and his time at Reading Jail as he battles his drug addiction and then fights to revive his career. Keach poignantly reveals his acting insecurities and relationship struggles.
All in All is full of priceless behind-the-scenes Hollywood moments and friendships-from his late-night pool and backgammon showdowns with John Huston to his passionate relationship with Judy Collins.
Incidental music composed and performed by Stacy Keach.
One of my favorite movies is Fat City which I feel has never received proper recognition as a real movie masterpiece, so that is why I wanted to listen to this book. It was a true delight. I did not know about Keach's extensive stage career or his classical training. Now I wish I could see him on stage in King Lear. There is no self pity or whining in this book. He is frank about bad choices he made, but the overall picture is of an actor who has enjoyed his profession to the fullest. I would bet that his career has been more fulfilling due to his desire to embrace all opportunities to work than many others who are bitter about not becoming big stars.
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Would you listen to All in All again? Why?
Keach's childhood struggles and Broadway tales alone make this earnest and entertaining memoir worthy of one's time, never mind the stories including Gregory Peck, Orson Welles, John Huston, Rod Steiger and Laurence Olivier, among other legends! And, regarding the origins of the pencil test...I'm speechless. Highly recommended to anybody who enjoys reading about acting, movies, the arts, Hollywood lore, etc. The best part is when you have this stage star offer his insight on playing Hamlet, King Lear, Richard the III, Macbeth, and some of the other well-known characters that sprung from the mind of that Brit genius. And it's all told in probably the best voice for an audiobook one could hope for. A gem!
The writing was good enough and the story was interesting and sincere. What disappointed me was Stacy Keach's reading. He started every sentence loud or high and ended most of them in a whisper. I was frequently left wondering what could have been the last few words in the previous sentence.