By Steve Daly
Updated July 30, 2008 at 04:00 AM EDT

He can be likable (McHale’s Navy), lovable (as a shlubby Bronx butcher in 1955’s Marty), or despicable (as the sadistic sarge in From Here to Eternity). But how’s Ernest Borgnine, now 91, as a memoirist in Ernie? Modest and sweet. If somebody was a jerk to him (like director Sam Peckinpah), Borgnine neither lashes out nor pulls punches. Recounting his 32-day marriage to Ethel Merman in 1964, he chisels a deft cameo of showbiz ego: She couldn’t stand that he was a bigger star at the time. Much of the rest is small potatoes, but nicely boiled. B

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