Saturday, 30 August 2008

Ingrid Bergman by CHARLOTTE CHANDLER (Pocket Books, £7.99)

I'm really enjoying reading biographies and autobiographies these days and this one has proved to be a fascinating account of a fine actress and natural beauty. I particularly like the way Charlotte Chandler doesn't intrude into her books but lets the subject speak for themselvesthroughpastinterviews, letters and diaries.
Having seen Ingrid Bergman interviewed on occasion, she appeared to be funny and self-deprecating - but this book shows she was also courageous. She bravely stood up to the critics of her relationship with film director Roberto Rossellini and their daughter Isabella commends Charlotte Chandler for showing the world how fine and "beautiful" her parents were "and still are". I was impressed by her sheer grit and determination to soldier on filming the life story of Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir when she was obviously very ill.
I was left with the impression from this book of a gutsy lady, a good mother and a natural beauty who also gave some excellent film performances.
I like Charlotte Chandler's style and look forward to finishing her biography of Joan Crawford before settling down with "The Girl Who Walked Home Alone", her biography of Bette Davis.

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