The Time is Ripe: The 1940 Journal of Clifford Odets; With an Introduction by William Gibson

Clifford Odets, Author Grove/Atlantic $22.5 (369p) ISBN 978-0-8021-1034-3
When Odets kept this diary in 1940, his best plays were behind him, his drama Night Music had just failed, the Group Theatre was falling apart and so was his marriage to movie star Luise Rainer, from whom he had separated. This egotistical journal is introspective but lacks self-insight. The author of Waiting for Lefty bitterly writes that one can ``never trust an American audience to understand'' a complex character. He smolders with resentment toward ``neurotic'' Rainer and rhapsodizes about his girlfriend Bette Grayson, who would soon become his wife; he pans director Harold Clurman's ``lamentable bungling''; philosophizes about Beethoven and projects his own misery onto Berlioz, Mozart and Leopold Stokowski. The diary is mainly of interest for its gossip about Fay Wray, Elia Kazan, Theodore Dreiser, Louis Nizer, George Balanchine, Walter Winchell, others. Photos. First serial to American Film. (June)
Reviewed on: 06/03/1988
Release date: 06/01/1988
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