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Search tags: Julie-Andrews
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review 2020-02-10 19:58
Home Work (Andrews)
Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years - Emma Walton Hamilton,Julie Andrews Edwards

"[T]he pressures were tremendous. Yet she never wavered. Her optimism, delicious humour and selfless nature were always on parade. It was if she'd been hired not just to act, sing and carry the entire film, but to keep everyone's spirits up as well. She did. She held us together and made us a team. Julie was quite transparent. There was no way she could conceal the simple truth that she cared profoundly for her work and for everyone else around her. I think that beneath my partly assumed sarcasm and indifference she saw that I cared too. As two people who barely came to know each other throughout those long months of filming, we had somehow bonded." (In Spite of Myself, p. 396).

 

So wrote Christopher Plummer about Julie Andrews in "The Sound of Music".

 

In her own always-generous if always-measured way, Julie Andrews returns the compliment in this volume (p. 55):


"I didn't see much of Chris Plummer beyond the workday, as he spent most of his spare time at the Bristol. Word spread that he was becoming renowned for his late-night performances at the piano in the hotel bar. In his youth, he had trained to be a concert pianist, and he was very good indeed. He apparently spent his evenings at the bar getting quite smashed and playing Rachmaninoff or Tchaikovsky until the wee hours. That said, Chris was the glue that held us all together; the one who always kept us from going too deep into the saccharine side of the story. He was so disciplined in his acting, so knowledgeable, that he was appropriately imposing as the Captain. Yet he was very gentle, and constructive too. He'd make suggestions as to how we would play a certain scene..."

 

In that last sentence is reflected one of the pervading themes of this volume of Andrews' memoir: her relative insecurity as an actor (she took no acting lessons prior to making these blockbuster movies), which is the more striking in comparison to her complete confidence in her musical side.

 

Just as her singing features impeccable diction and razor-sharp intonation, Andrews' prose here is correct and well-crafted (and has gone through careful editing, obviously, by her daughter Emma Walton Hamilton). Though it's idiomatic and not over-formal, you will search in vain for exclamation marks or exaggerations in her prose. The net effect, especially if you are not reading carefully, is rather emotionless. It is only if you look carefully at exactly which well-chosen words she has actually chosen that you can read the emotion, barely beneath the surface. This is particularly true, of course, when she writes about her family - her divorce from her first husband, Tony Walton; and her long marriage to director Blake Edwards, and creation of a blended family (Emma, two of Edwards' children acquired through marriage, and two adopted orphans from Vietnam).

 

The detailed portion of the book, true to its title, is largely focused on Andrews' Hollywood films - the three huge musical hits (Mary Poppins, The Sound of Music, and Victor/Victoria) as well as the somewhat lesser-known films, some hits and some misses (The Americanization of Emily, Hawaii, Star!, Thoroughly Modern Millie, S.O.B., 10 - and several others I've missed out, I'm sure). Since it's a chronological account, we also get stories about the Julie and Carol television specials, as well as her own TV series. In addition she chronicles the beginning of her side-hustle as a children's book writer. Since there's no mention of her late-life work (the Princess Diaries movies, for instance), I think it's possible that a volume 3 is in contemplation.

 

Oh yes, did that bond from "The Sound of Music" last? If you can believe the joint interview of Plummer and Andrews (2005) that I pulled up on youtube the other night, it most certainly did. The affection and respect between them didn't look at all acted to me.

 

If you're at all interested in Julie Andrews' work, or in Hollywood history, I heartily recommend this one.

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review 2020-01-01 04:15
Home Work
Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years - Emma Walton Hamilton,Julie Andrews Edwards
I Picked Up This Book Because: Continue the story after Home

The Story:

This book covers Ms Andrews’ career from 1963-1986. About the time she films Mary Poppins to the just before Victor/Victoria goes to Broadway. We learn a lot about her professional life but we also find out quite a lot about her personal life and family. Her husbands, parents, siblings and her dearest treasures, her children. They had quite a different family life than anyone I’ve known in person. There was constant traveling, immigration issues, staff, friends and adoption. I didn’t realize how much Ms Andrews worked with her husband. They did several movies/productions together and seemed to be a good working team. I was especially moved by Ms Andrew’s travels to Vietnam and her humanitarian efforts there. The camps and conditions she described were deplorable. I pray for those who had to live that way and for those who have to live like that now.

The Random Thoughts:



The Score Card:

description

4 Stars
 
 
 
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review 2019-12-24 18:50
The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles
The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles - Julie Andrews Edwards

This book is reminiscent of The Phantom Tollbooth and The Wizard of Oz. It took a while for the story to get going (all the bouncing between our world and Whangdoodleland didn't help my reading flow), but once it did it's a pretty solid fantasy adventure. 

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review 2019-10-25 09:55
Home Work by Julie Andrews
Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years - Emma Walton Hamilton,Julie Andrews Edwards

TITLE:  Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years

 

AUTHOR: Julie Andrews Edwards

 

DATE PUBLISHED: 2019

 

FORMAT:  Hardcover

 

ISBN-13:  9780306845987

 

______________________

DESCRIPTION:

 

"In this follow-up to her critically acclaimed memoir, Home, Julie Andrews shares reflections on her astonishing career, including such classics as Mary Poppins, The Sound of Music, and Victor/Victoria.

In Home, the number one New York Times international bestseller, Julie Andrews recounted her difficult childhood and her emergence as an acclaimed singer and performer on the stage.


With this second memoir, Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years, Andrews picks up the story with her arrival in Hollywood and her phenomenal rise to fame in her earliest films--Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music. Andrews describes her years in the film industry -- from the incredible highs to the challenging lows. Not only does she discuss her work in now-classic films and her collaborations with giants of cinema and television, she also unveils her personal story of adjusting to a new and often daunting world, dealing with the demands of unimaginable success, being a new mother, the end of her first marriage, embracing two stepchildren, adopting two more children, and falling in love with the brilliant and mercurial Blake Edwards. The pair worked together in numerous films, including Victor/Victoria, the gender-bending comedy that garnered multiple Oscar nominations.

Cowritten with her daughter, Emma Walton Hamilton, and told with Andrews's trademark charm and candor, Home Work takes us on a rare and intimate journey into an extraordinary life that is funny, heartrending, and inspiring.
"

_______________

REVIEW:

 

An interesting memoir that deals with Julie Andrews' Hollywood years.  The book mostly deals with her personal and family issues, with some intersting inside bits about the actual filming of some of her movies. 

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review 2017-06-29 17:24
Home: A Memoir of My Early Years
Home: A Memoir of My Early Years - Julie Andrews Edwards

I Picked Up This Book Because: Saw it in the library and was curious.

The Story:

This depicts Julie’s life up until she heads to LA to film Mary Poppins. I must say I was disappointed not to get the details of her time on set of Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music as these were the two titles I was most familiar but I learned so much about her life prior that honestly there was no room for much more.

Julie was born with show business in her bones. I am not surprised at the amazing person she has become because she had an amazing, if difficult at times, start. I always enjoy listening to people tell their own story and Julie’s narration of her book was superb.

The Random Thoughts:



The Score Card:

description

3.5 Stars

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