Actor Frank Langella’s powers of observation lend the odd brief profiles in “ Dropped Names” substance and richness. Dropped NamesFamous Men and Women As I Knew ThemFrank LangellaHarper: pp., $Frank Langella’s “Dropped Names” is a. The Juiciest Bits From Frank Langella’s Celebrity-Leveling Memoir “Dropped Names”. “All actors are angry babies”: Langella. (Courtesy Getty.

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Langella does not spare himself. Aug 20, Mary Timbes rated it really liked it. Title is accurate – you don’t learn much about Frank except that he has a way of ingratiating himself with people and he likes to screw.

He’s met some you’d expect and some you wouldn’t. Two lines come to mind when thinking of this book. Sep 02, Terri rated it it was ok Shelves: He tells more than a few stories of great S. Frank Langella has been in show business since the late s. However, his portraits range from funny to poignant to painful as he shows us that most “famous” people do not have the enviable lives we believe they do.

Yet odd as it might seem, he seems to have had close if not intimate relationships with everyone on the planet except me! JFK in yellow pants, Monty Clift curled and unconscious in a hallway, Rita Hayworth patronized by a frustrated crew, Yul Brynner arrogantly insisting everyone at New York’s 21 get an order of french fries.

Miller is unable to see how the character that reflects him is a person no one in the audience likes. Intimately acquainted with the capriciousness of the limelight and its warping effect on celebrity souls, the book has wicked fun placing its subjects all dead save socialite Rachel “Bunny” Mellon on Dr. Langella gives a well written, insightful and sensitive voice to some great stories he shared with other famous people.

There are 66 chapters, some quite brief, and the prose shimmers with humor, insight, and occasional testiness. Dropped Names is, like its subjects, riveting and unforgettable. Massively uninteresting and self-involved guy. This is more of a remembrance of the more famous and the slightly less famous people Frank has known, basically, it does what it says on the tin.


Unfortunately, the book suffers, IMHO, from dwelling on his intimate relations with so many of the people profiled or mentioned.

Some are his friends, co workers etc. A good chunk of the book is quite friendly, with respectful recollections of Al Hirschfeld, George C.

Langella droppdd us with him into the private worlds and privileged lives of movie stars, presidents, royalty, literary lions, the social elite, and the greats of the Broadway stage. Frqnk is both an avid and capable observer of others in the strange fishbowl world he exists in, and also determined to not fall victim to any of the demons that have laid so many of his compatriots low.

I hope he writes that story someday. There are almost no self-revelations here, carefully preserving Langella’s privacy so we never know most of the “companions” that he mentions in the stories though he does claim to conquer Elizabeth Taylor in a droppdd chapter. He was a young Italian boy who had grown up in New Jersey and was working at the Cape Playhouse when he became friends with Bunny Melon’s daughter. With clarity, insight, and an unflinching truthfulness and candor, Langella provides the reader with penetrating and well-crafted vignettes throughout his year acting career of the many notable people of the last half of the 20th century e.

The veteran performer shares often unflattering but always eloquent opinions. In a conversation with the author, he admitted that had acting not been open to him, he would have been a writer. Sep 03, Mediaman rated it it was droppev. On to the book review, though fropped gets the impression Mr.

Dropped Names: Famous Men and Women As I Knew Them

Langella as a bit of a predator himself, as he makes his career elbowing his way through a succession of encounters with big names in and out of show business, from Frnak to Elizabeth Taylor. He’s written a memoir of people he has known.


I was not disappointed. He is not always cast as the “hero”. So many tales of his are of dropepd and flawed if talented people. I think Frank Langella is a terrific actor, so I was interested in reading his memoir. JFK in ye Langella’s acting is intense and dangerous.

Frank Langella has been a professional actor for over five decades and hopes to carry on for several more. Aug 11, Patrice rated it it was amazing. As a memoir, this is adequate. Hope he keeps his day job Poking holes in all the great celebrity icons of his era. Copyright Los Angeles Times. Jul 03, Cindy Knoke rated it liked it. Nice to come away from this book feeling that the man that was described by a fellow actor friend of my family growing up as singularly self-absorbed and vain may have grown up.

Some stories here are very compelling. Not many people can come across as silmutaneously se Title is accurate – you don’t learn much about Frank except that he has a way of ingratiating himself with people and he likes to screw.

If you’re “not into ‘show biz’ stuff” – skip it. I had written a lengthy review earlier, lost to a computer “hiccup” at the last minute If you’re expecting to learn more about Langella himself, you get a feel for who he is, but not a lot about his own off-screen life; however, that may be as he’s careful about respecting others’ privacy.

Dropped Names: Famous Men and Women As I Knew Them by Frank Langella

He elected to only feature the deceased and dedicates a chapter to each one, organized chronologically by their deaths. If you’re a fan like I am, this book is highly recommended. He’ll lock horns with any order of big game, even if they don’t have horns to lock.