Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years by Julie Andrews

HWJA

So dull. Like a suburban housewife bringing you up to date on the doings of the various members of a hugely extended family circle, none of whom you’ve met or care about. The accent is all on everything is ok, fixed this, organised that, scheduled the other thing, on the resolving of problems rather than an account or exploration of them. In the meantime, her mom has an alcohol problem, her step dad’s a wife beater, her step-mom attempts suicide, her brother has a drug problem, her husband is a hypochondriac film director given to bouts of depression, and she’s seeing a psychiatrist five times a week. You’d think it would all be more interesting. But it isn’t. You can tell she really hates someone when she keeps her fulsome praise short: ‘Rock Hudson was charming, had a great sense of humour and was a real professional. We didn’t see much of him during the shoot.’ You read and read and read and at the end you feel you know her less than when you started.

José Arroyo

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