Picks and Pans Review: Ingrid Bergman
by John Russell Taylor
Photographs of the young Bergman from her first films in Sweden now seem simply extraordinary. She is astonishingly pretty, vibrant, animated. Once she arrives in Hollywood, the photographs are dramatically different: She is beautiful, but stiff and self-conscious, with too much makeup and odd, ill-chosen clothes. In his examination of her life, Taylor, art critic of the London Times, is fascinated by that old question: What is a star? The ability to inspire affection from audiences, he writes, "is an extraordinary gift, quite apart from the worship inspired by a Garbo, the identification enforced by a Crawford, the edgy, ambiguous feelings provoked by a Davis, the uncomplicated sex appeal of a Harlow. Perhaps the nearest, in this respect, strangely enough, was a star who in most other respects could hardly be more different: Marilyn Monroe. Monroe and Bergman had in common a ready way to their audience's heart." This is primarily a picture book, but the text is much more thought-provoking and entertaining than is usual in the genre. It makes an excellent companion volume to Bergman's memoir, My Story. (St. Martin's, $12.95)
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