Hollywood Beauty: Linda Darnell and the American Dream

Ronald L. Davis, Author University of Oklahoma Press $34.95 (216p) ISBN 978-0-8061-2327-1
In 1938, age 15, propelled by a horrendous stage mother, Darnell emerged from Dallas, to parlay her exceptional beauty into a Hollywood career. Her brief professional stint included roles in such popular films as A Letter to Three Wives and Forever Amber but was marked by several unsuccessful marriages and alcoholism. Film historian Davis of Southern Methodist University suggests that Darnell's naive expectations and lack of education led to the exploitive relationships that shaped her depressing story. Ending with her death in 1965 in a fire that destroyed the suburban Chicago home where she was visiting, Darnell's life illustrates the grimy side of the one-time Hollywood star system. And although her tale is much more pedestrian than the ``American tragedy'' Davis declares it to have been, the book, more thoughtful than the average Hollywood bio, will be of interest to serious film buffs. Photos. (May)
Reviewed on: 04/29/1991
Release date: 05/01/1991
Paperback - 256 pages - 978-0-8061-3330-0
Open Ebook - 248 pages - 978-0-585-14823-6
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