Altered States: The Autobiography of Ken Russell

Ken Russell, Author Bantam Books $22.5 (337p) ISBN 978-0-553-07831-2
The controversial British filmmaker ( Women in Love ; The Devils ) takes an extravagant stream-of-consciousness trip through his life, swinging between present and past so rapidly that readers may occasionally lose their footing. Russell, now 64, describes problems on his film sets, the frequent periods when he has seemed to be persona non grata in the movie business, and his two marriages; also provided are flashbacks to his childhood in a working-class neighborhood of Southhampton, his years at a nautical college and his start in filmmaking with the BBC. Some of his recollections, especially those of his outspoken Mum, are funny, and a few are poignant. This memoir, peppered with accounts of madcap experiences, biting comments about associates in the film world and hallucinatory scenes, has the same shock value as Russell's movies. Photos not seen by PW. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 09/30/1991
Release date: 10/01/1991
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