Moving Pictures

Since movie stars are likely to spend their youth miming reality rather than experiencing it, emotional truths often catch them by surprise unbecomingly late in life. Thus the astonished Hollywood autobiography steeped in belated insights about the ways of the heart and world. Latest case in point, but no less painful for all that, Ali MacGraw’s Moving Pictures. This competently written memoir hinges on McGraw’s discovery that women can be addicted to men.

MacGraw was famously addicted to Steve McQueen, whose insistence that she quit acting during their four-year marriage contributed to the disintegration of her career after her starring role in Love Story in l970. While MacGraw’s early years as a model (whose toes were sucked by Salvador Dalí) are colorfully recounted, Moving Pictures follows such a predictable Hollywood trajectory, from overnight celebrity to alcoholic collapse to religious conversion at the Betty Ford Center, you wonder whether reading a published confessional like this one should be as obligatory as a screen test for aspiring starlets. C

Moving Pictures
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