Hopper: A Journey into the American Dream

Tom Folsom, Author
Tom Folsom. . HarperCollins/It, $26.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-06-220694-7
Reviewed on: 12/24/2012
Release date: 03/01/2013
Paperback - 388 pages - 978-0-06-222341-8
Ebook - 320 pages - 978-0-06-220696-1
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-06-226631-6
Paperback - 305 pages - 978-0-06-220695-4
Hardcover - 978-1-84513-702-1
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Folsom, whose previous works include The Mad Ones and Mr. Untouchable, focuses here on actor Dennis Hopper’s monumental successes and failures, like Easy Rider and The Last Movie, respectively, while nicely capturing the essence of other aspects of the actor’s life—his Kansas childhood, rehab stints, and pitch-man career—in short, lively vignettes. Though it is nearly impossible to put down on paper the life of a man who was so motivated by visions real and imagined, Folsom does an admirable job capturing Hopper’s manic and spirited personality in prose, as when he describes the actor’s adopted home of Taos, N.Mex.: “[a] hidden plateau, damp and lush and glowing iridescent in the hallucinatory light when filtered through the thin alpine air [that] illuminated everything in Technicolor.” Still, even with Folsom’s exhaustive research and incisive perception, the book doesn’t fully explain the mystery of Dennis Hopper, but that in itself is a fitting homage to this once great yet enigmatic entertainer (Mar.)
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