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While the book does have a good chunk of stuff about movies and the funny stories and internal monologues that result from watching so many, that's not what this book is about. The book is more about the early days of Oswalt's comedy career after having moved to California. Living in San Francisco, working as a sketch writer for MadTV, the legend of The Largo--so many things that Oswalt has hinted at and revealed glimpses of throughout his stand-up career-- are fleshed out in much greater detail in this book.
Now you should know that the reason I bought the book is because I'm a huge Patton Oswalt fan. He just does it for me.* I gave it five stars because it delivered exactly what I wanted--HAVE WANTED for about ten years: a closer examination of how Patton got to where he is. I do stand-up myself and he's my inspiration for getting into comedy. So these are the tales and looks behind the curtain I've been waiting for. Zombie/Spaceship/Wasteland was akin to a look inside Bruce Wayne's mind (especially his childhood and adolescent mind) before he left Gotham to travel the world to learn the skills he'd need to become the Caped Crusader. Silver Screen Fiend is more like Batman Begins, as it offers a better look at his training, his internal struggles, and his early career.
And since I'm a fan of his, I enjoy listening to Patton narrate. So if you are a fan of his stand-up and really like behind the scenes stories about comedy, writing for TV, being a movie extra, and listening to people talk about movies, this book is for you.
*(I saw Big Fan and Ratatouille for the same reason; I'd personally recommend Ratatouille because everyone likes a good Pixar flick and I'd recommend Big Fan if you like football, particularly The New York Giants.)
35 of 36 people found this review helpful
I can't say enough about this book. It was beautifully written, and would have worked just as well as fiction as a memoir, so well done was the prose and character arc. I know nothing about movies, but I still gobbled up the story. As literary as you'd like without being dry. I'll definitely read again.
32 of 33 people found this review helpful
an excellently written, brilliantly read memoir that's funny, moving and wholly enjoyable from start to finish.
I quite enjoyed spending some time with Patton and know I'd find him and infectious presence in real life. The book is quite slim and at times feels a little overwritten, but his passion for film is something we share and was a joy to feel in good company. His section on the night cafe was a night cafe moment in itself and changed the way I think about my own life and the cause and effect of all things. With moments like this its hard not to forgive any shortcomings. I look f