By Charles Winecoff
September 24, 1999 at 04:00 AM EDT

The Million Dollar Mermaid

B+
type
  • Book
Genre

Judging from this spirited memoir by Hollywood’s first aquatic movie star, Esther Williams didn’t know a man — from Johnny Weissmuller, her ”totally amoral” swimming partner in Billy Rose’s Aquacade, to Fernando Lamas, her domineering third husband — who wasn’t mightily well-endowed. But physicality was unavoidable for the athletic Williams, who as a sexually abused teen found safety in swimming. Forthright and affably ribald, Mermaid details her harrowing experiences (usually under the direction of Busby Berkeley) as a human commodity at MGM, where her intelligence navigating the choppy seas of stardom made her a true champion. B+

The Million Dollar Mermaid

type
  • Book
Genre
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  • The Million Dollar Mermaid
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