If I Stop I'll Die: The Comedy and Tragedy of Richard Pryor

John Alfred Williams, Author Thunder's Mouth Press $19.95 (234p) ISBN 978-1-56025-008-1
John Williams ( The Man Who Cried I Am ) and his son, Dennis, who teaches writing at Cornell University, here take a critical look at the life and art of one of show business's most troubled and troubling personalities. They discuss the sensational events that have brought Pryor notoriety--self-immolation, drug use, numerous marriages--but more significantly concentrate on his place in the entertainment world, where he has established himself as a comic genius. But in spite of his brilliant stage routines, Pryor has made consistently mediocre movies. Attempting to explain this problem, the authors examine the history of blacks in the entertainment industry and present penetrating insights into why black filmmakers in Hollywood have been unable to present a true picture of African American life in America. Photos not seen by PW. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1991
Release date: 01/01/1991
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