A Short Critique of Alec Baldwin’s memoir, Nevertheless
Alec Baldwin’s Nevertheless (2017)
Here we are again! It’s Book-of-the-Month Day here at Snippets of SnapDragon.
Are you excited? Did you wake up early, frantically checking your feed to see if Snap’s review was up and ready for your viewing pleasure?
Well, nevertheless, here it is.
(Sorry. Couldn’t resist.)
. . .
This is another book that found itself in my hands without pomp and circumstance. In fact, it was in the bargain bin for a meager six dollars and change. (It’s a hard-back!) Anyway, I’ve always had a bit of a crush on Baldwin, what with his whiskey voice and weathered face. Plus, whenever I see him I instantly think of Beetlejuice, which transports me back in time to VHS tapes and the magical time of my childhood.
So I bought it.
In a word, it’s good. Not great, but good. Baldwin begins his memoir by warning the reader of pretty much just that. He wrote the book because he was paid to, and he approaches the task with humility and honesty.
While I grew a bit weary of his frequent name-dropping of film execs I’ve never heard of, he does sprinkle in beautiful moments of his love for acting, particularly in the theatre. He recounts each of his major movie roles, and I appreciated the thoughtfulness behind each one. I never doubted his candor for an instant.
Additionally, he spoke of his family with tremendous love. I enjoyed the description of his youth, and his complicated relationship with his parents.
But I think what struck me most was his more than thirty-year commitment to sobriety.
After a terrifying episode of substance abuse, he called it quits and never looked back. February 23, 1985 was his last bout with drugs and alcohol.
Needless to say, I really respect that.
Favorite passage? Hmm… There truly are many little gems throughout.
(Side note: I enjoyed hearing his voice as I read. It reminded me of The Royal Tenenbaums.)
How about this one:
“Campaign finance reform is the linchpin of nearly every problem we face as a nation, just as our oil-based economy is the linchpin of our issues abroad. If the first issue is not addressed, we will continue to see the US electoral system gamed by insiders who put forth enormous amounts of money on behalf of any candidate who will read from their script in order to get the role of a lifetime. Even if that candidate is a foppish casino operator who had heretofore shown no interest in national politics” (Baldwin).
Well done, Alec.
I like you.