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Great biography that focus primarily on the Star Wars film making years but touches on Lucas' childhood, other films and impact on film making and the theatre going experience. Jay Snyder was a solid choice for narrator.
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I felt confident the George Lucas biography was in good hands when I heard Brian Jay Jones was writing it. Jones wrote the enormously readable biography of Jim Henson, also on Audible.
This compelling book looks at the director's life and career, from student films at USC. to Lucas's difficult decision to sell the Star Wars franchise to Disney in 2012 and the release of The Force Awakens in 2015.
Jones begins his biography in Tunisia in 1976. Lucas, fresh off the unexpected success of his small-budget film American Graffiti, is bogged down in the desert shoot for his space opera Star Wars. Nothing's going right. The R2-D2 units keep breaking down. And English actor Anthony Daniels is a mess of bruises and cuts from wearing the unwieldy C-3PO costume. Rain keeps falling. Will Star Wars be the biggest flop of the director's career?
Jones then takes us back to the beginning. We meet young Lucas, the son of a small-town stationer in Northern California. His dad was a hard-to-please father, and Lucas was a rebel who found his cause at USC film school.
I have to admit I was impatient to get to the Star Wars chapters. But there is a lot of good story ahead of that: Lucas meeting Francis Ford Coppola and meeting the brilliant film editor (and his first wife) Marcia Griffin, the filming of THX and American Graffiti.
Star Wars and Indiana Jones fanatics may be disappointed that more pages aren't devoted to their fave sagas. But this is a biography of a life, and so the author only gives broad outlines with some detailed moments for each film.
This is an unauthorized biography, but you don't feel it. Jones did his research. There are so many quotes from Lucas and other principals, culled from secondary sources, that you believe Jones sat down and had nice long chats.
I was engaged throughout. Lucas came off as a quiet, sometimes remote, but all the same engaging character who had a genius for attracting the best people and for innovating the look, sound and making of films.
The narration is perfectly low-key. Just a really good narration that keeps the listener involved in the story line.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful