POSTED November 21 2013

Growing up Huston: Anjelica Huston’s new memoir

Anjelica Huston

Anjelica Huston

Unsurprisingly for one who’s both third-generation Hollywood and third-generation scribe, Angelica Huston (whose paternal grandmother was crime reporter Rhea Gore and whose father was screenwriter/director John Huston) gives good memoir.

A Story Lately Told, the first in a proposed two-volume chronicle), has shades of What Maisie Knew¬†in its author’s account of growing up on an Irish manor of parents estranged soon after her birth. Her mother was the Balanchine ballerina Enrica Soma, who gave up a promising career to marry the director when she was 20 and he 44. Their unconventional marriage was echoed in their living arrangements: Anjelica, her older brother Tony and Enrica lived in the cosy Little House on the estate while Enrica restored the Big House where John lived when he was in residence and where they entertained, lavishly. You can read my review here.

The book follows Anjelica from Ireland to London to New York, where at 17 she establishes herself as a fashion model, and end when she is 22. One of its nicer anecdotes involves how when she was a pre-teen she stood before the mirror, a volume of Charles Addams cartoons in hand, pretending to be Morticia Addams, one of her future roles.

My two favorite Huston the Younger performances are in films directed by her father: Prizzi’s Honor and The Dead. Yours?

 


4 comments

  1. Gary Kramer says:

    THE GRIFTERS. I can’t think of a sack of oranges the same way after seeing them used on Angelica in this film. I also love her in CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS, THE MAN FROM ELYSIAN FIELDS, and THE WITCHES. And cringe at her performance in THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE remake. I remember lions and laughing at that.

  2. I’m sure the memoir is extremely enjoyable for those interested, but I must say that the excerpt I read, which recounted her unsuccessful (obviously) suicide attempts during the Bob Richardson relationship made me angry and not want to read the book. I’m sick and tired of unsuccessful suicide attempts being used as a publicity prop. It’s serious and tragic business, not just a rhythmic “beat” in Rich Hollywood Stars’ otherwise “look at me, I’m wonderful” life fantasias. I enjoyed Ms. Huston quite a bit in Manhattan Murder Mystery. She’s not one of my favorites, though, and I tend to think that if it were not for her famous name, she herself would not have found the success she has had as a movie actress.

  3. For me “The Addams Family” is one of the most funny and strange movie she did !

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