Hurricane Billy: The Stormy Life and Films of William Friedkin

Nat Segaloff, Author William Morrow & Company $20.95 (320p) ISBN 978-0-688-07852-2
Segaloff, a freelance journalist who concentrates on the film industry, chronicles the career of William Friedkin from his early documentaries to his major films ( The Boys in the Band ; The French Connection ; The Exorcist ), which have made him a dominant, controversial figure. Basing much of the book on interviews with the director and his friends and associates, the author attempts to understand Friedkin's fascination with sex, violence and murder, the sensational qualities that have made his films so shocking and so commercially successful. Unfortunately, even though the book is written in a gritty tone when Segaloff discusses the personality of a man known for his ruthlessness and need to control, the long synopses of the movie plots are presented in such a colorless style that one loses interest. Illustrations not seen by PW. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 01/30/1990
Release date: 02/01/1990
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