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Posts Tagged ‘the west wing’

Rob Lowe is a name familiar to anyone who grew up in the 80s.  He became a huge star, was a member of the ‘Brat Pack’ and graced bedroom walls everywhere.  In the late 80s and 90s, his career took something of a nosedive, but since his work on The West Wing, there has been something of a resurgence.  I remember all the fan-worship of Lowe, and after seeing him speaking at the Hay Festival when this book came out, I looked forward to reading it, and getting his own perspective on his career.

It’s an entertaining story, told in an engaging and warm voice.  He describes his childhood, with a loving but turbulent homelife, and his early ambition to become an actor.  His stories about his early days in the industry were my favourite parts of the book – the account of making The Outsiders, as one of a group of soon-to-be-household-names, including Tom Cruise, Patrick Swayze and Emilio Estevez – was particularly interesting (his descriptions of co-stars Swayze and Cruise were affectionate and very witty).

Lowe does a good job of portraying how a young and naive young man can get caught up in the Hollywood machine and lifestyle, and how inevitably, that lifestyle led to his fall from grace in spectacular fashion in 1988, with the sex-tape scandal.  He glosses over the scandal and fallout somewhat, but I can’t really blame him for that – he acknowledges it and moves on.

The book is packed with little anecdotes about some of the famous people he met (Cary Grant, Liza Minnelli amongst others, and these before he even got into acting himself), which are entertaining.

What comes through most is Lowe’s love for his wife and family, and his passion for his work.  I accept that there was a fair amount left out of the book; nonetheless, it’s an entertaining and enjoyable memoir, which I liked a lot and would recommend to fans of Lowe, or anyone with an interest in film-making.

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