The Ragman’s Son

The Ragman’s Son

Have just finished reading an autobiography written some 20 years ago by the actor Kirk Douglas. Entitled ‘The Ragman’s Son’ it charts his life from New Amsterdam in New York where he was born the only son of illiterate Jewish immigrants to his rise to become one of the most recognisable faces in Hollywood and the father of four equally sucessful sons. Honest, funny and touching at turns it is a very human story of a deeply flawed man and an insight into a Hollywood that is long gone. One of my favourite stories is of John Wayne berating Douglas for having played a weak character. ‘We have to set an example of masculinity,’ Wayne insisted. And Douglas looked at this drunken fellow actor and said. ‘What we do is all make believe. You’re not really John Wayne, you know.

Posted in Book Reviews

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