Thank you Brent for giving me the inspiration to write again. I hope you visit soon!
THERE AND BACK AGAIN, AN ACTOR’S TALE by Sean Astin
If you loved the Lord of the Rings movies as much as I did, this book is for you. Sean Astin has become famous for his beloved portrayal of Frodo’s best friend, Samwise Gamgee, his faithful and loyal companion who helped him all the way to Mordor to destroy the Ring of Power.
Sean Astin comes from a famous lineage. His father is John Astin (of Addam’s Family fame) and his mother is Patty Duke. He was brought up among two popular actors and has been involved in the movie industry since he was a child (his first famous part was in « The Goonies »).
However, Astin has rarely been able to shine in major roles despite a well-crafted acting career and the guidance of his parents and he doesn’t hide his underdog statute in this biography. He recounts his hopes as well as his disappointments as an actor and strives, with a pleasant narrative, to tell us about himself (one difficult time for him was acting under the direction of Warren Beatty).
I was pleasantly and passionately taken into his personal tale and of course was impatient to read about his two-year life on the set of the Lord of The Rings in New Zealand and how he got the part of a lifetime. That is the most interesting moment of the book as Sean describes Jackson’s talent at directing this movie monster. Everything is there from the glorious to the less glorious. I was captivated by some funny or sad moments off set with his acting partners. From Viggo Mortensen’s political activism, Stuart Townsend’s dismissal from the part of Aragorn to Sir Ian McKellen’s experience in a tattoo parlor with some of the cast, everything is there told with lots of fun and drama.
The young actor is coming of age through this experience and is not ashamed of telling about his own low self-esteem, dreams and frustrations as an actor.
If you are a fan of the trilogy, this book is for you. If you just want to read about an actor’s path in the movie industry, this book is for you. I enjoyed it immensely for its sense of storytelling and honesty.