Sunday, February 13, 2005

The Immortal Count

This week I finished reading The Immortal Count: The Life and Films of Bela Lugosi, by Arthur Lennig. (Earlier, I had read Lennig's biography of Erich von Stroheim.). I liked The Immortal Count a great deal. Lennig's book is very well researched, full of detail, written in a readable prose, and sympathetic to its subject. Lennig's account of Lugosi's early life is especially interesting. And his account of Lugosi's last years are nearly tragic. Lennig's own encounters (as a boy, and later as a young man) with the actor are especially poignant. Lennig has written the definitive account of Lugosi's life, as well as "A moving, lively, witty, sad book that revives once more the long dead Count Dracula." It is in the words of one publication, "An example for future writers of show business biographies." I would recommend this book.

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