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Book reviews for "Medved,_Michael" sorted by average review score:

The Hollywood Hall of Shame: The Most Expensive Flops in Movie History
Published in Paperback by Perigee (1984)
Authors: Harry Medved and Michael Medved
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Bombs Away!
Less pungent than their othe satirical works, this takes the Medved brothers into the realm of the hopelessly expensive financial flops of Hollywood. Thus Cleopatra, Heaven's Gate and the Fall of the Roman Empire all feature. Trouble is, few of these films are actually BAD films (I think highly of Cleopatra and FOTRE) so the previous rhythm and flow of the Turkeys is somewhat lost. Still, a fun account of what went wrong.

I am sorry
but harry medved writes the funniest books

The Golden Turkey Awards
Published in Paperback by Berkley Pub Group (1981)
Authors: Harry Medved and Michael Medved
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I laughed until tears ran down my face.
This is a must read for anyone who grew up with, or who loves, the movies around the 1950's. It is presented in an "Oscar format" with comments and thumbnail descriptions by the Brothers Medved. Their love for these movies is evident; their humor is direct and presents perspective on actors, Hollywood, directors, plots, and America, in a time of greater innocence and before special effects were king. Hours of fun and a great guide to late movies. I was paging through this book in a bookstore when I saw the heading, "The Worst Movie Ever Made." Well, I knew what was the worst movie ever made, but was also sure the reviewers had never seen it. When I turned to see their choice--it was the same one! I bought the book on the spot and have been giving copies to special friends as gifts ever since.

Hospital: The Hidden Lives of a Medical Center Staff
Published in Paperback by Pocket Books (1984)
Author: Michael Medved
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The inside scoop
If you want to really know what goes on at the hospital, read this book. You will never go into a hospital by yourself again. Mister Medved talked to a lot of hospital people and they told him how they live every day, what they think and what they do. I was very surprised. I think you will be, too. Get this book before you have to visit someone you love in the hospital. Get it before you have to go. You'll be glad you did.

Son of Golden Turkey Awards
Published in Paperback by Random House Trade Paperbacks (1986)
Authors: Harry Medved and Michael Medved
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The Turkey Saga Continues
Having achieved vast success with the original Golden Turkeys - itself a sequel to the Fifty Worst Films of All Time - this was the third instalment in the bad film saga. Though not quite as good as the first Turkeys, the Medveds had discovered a rich vein and this book delivers much mirth. Two-headed monster movies, bad lyrics, inane dialogue and bad special effects still have a special place in my heart.

The Golden Turkey Awards: Nominees and Winners, the Worst Achievements in Hollywood History
Published in Paperback by Perigee (1980)
Authors: Harry Medved and Michael Medved
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Very funny and insightful. (...)

Medved's Only Good Book
The Golden Turkey Awards is a well-written, funny review of some of the most inane and stupid movies that Hollywood has ever produced. Michael Medved was onto something here, but in later years he sold out by becoming somewhat of a whiny right wing critic of Hollywood. It's hard for me to decide between him and John Stossel (of ABC's 20/20) which one is in more dire need of a sharp blow upside the head with a 2 x 4.

The Rediscovery of Ed Wood
Unlike so many of the sequels which receive awards in this work, this sequel to the "50 Worst Films of all Time" exceeds the original. The Medveds have the huge advantage of having tapped into the huge underground "bad film" cult and discovered a motherlode of new bad films, of which Ed Wood's "Plan Nine from Outer Space" is the standout. (In turn this inspired the Tim Burton film.) Others include Night of the Lepus (a rabbit monster movie), Airport 79: The Concorde (winner of the worst romantic dialogue), and "Him" (the least erotic adult film ever made). When I was young I read this book from cover to cover and am still wondering whether the final claim, that one of the films exposed therein was a hoax, was itself true, and if so, which one. Surely not "They Saved HItler's Brain?" (Actually, that WAS real....)

What Really Happened to the Class of '65
Published in Paperback by Ballantine Books (1977)
Authors: Michael Medved and David Wallechinsky
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Normally I dislike "reality TV" sorts of things- I feel as though I'm enjoying other people's misery- but I found this in the book section of a second-hand store (always a good sign) and grabbed it. It's basically a collection of stories of how a group of people spent the years 1965-1975. Despite the fact that these are real people and it's dangerous to use such a small group to make generalizations about a time period, I think I can safely say that it was a lot more action-packed than things are right now (or maybe I just lead an especially boring life). My only complaint was that so many of the stories were about the more popular or well-known students; I would've liked to see what happened to some of the other students. I'm not sure what this book proves, if anything; I get the feeling that there are a few great truths in it, if only I knew where to look. Whatever it is, it's a great read.

My, how times have changed
Written in 1975, What Really Happened to the Class of '65 is a compilation of interviews with 30 members of the 1965 graduating class of Palisades High School. Most of those in question grew up in very affluent households and most of them, in the course of their interviews, seem to have an almost astounding ignorance of the fact that their teenage lives were hardly the norm. However, that's not a major problem or concern. Instead, what makes this book interesting is seeing just how much time has changed -- both in the ten years between their graduation and the book's publication and, even more so, in the decades after the book came out. On the whole, everybody in the book represents a certain type -- popular jerk, pretty boy, quarterback, nerd, bully, cheerleader, ect. However, in the course of some remarkably candid interviews, they're all given a chance to establish their own unique, for-the-most-part fairly likeable individual indentities. Reading it made me wonder what was really going on in the heads of those people I knew in high school who I simply assumed were bullies or jocks or cheerleaders or geeks and nothing else? It actually made me want to get in touch with people I barely knew just to find out who they were now.

Most of the interviewees share in common an amazement at how much times had changed between their high school graduation and 1975. All of them, for the most part, are quick to point out that they're now totally different (read: better) people. Most of them, as well, sound like almost stereotypical creatures of '70s -- i.e., the quarterback becomes a bisexual, new age minister, quite a few have made fortunes of their own but still proudly wear their hair long and seem to believe they were personally responsible for ending Viet Nam and forcing Nixon to resign. While reading, I found myself wondering what happened to these folks once the '80s hit, much less the '90s. On the whole, you could imagine most of them probably voted for Carter in '76 and then spent the next decade pursuing the same basic life styles that they seem so quick to attack their parents for doing. Its a shame that Medved and Wallechinsky didn't follow-up on these people in 1985 and 1995. (Though Wallechinsky did write a sequel on his own, for some reason he decided to interview a new batch of people!) Of course, the most interesting change to be found amongst the people profiled is that of co-author Michael Medved. In the book, he almost practically boasts of how, once in college, he dedicated all of his time to "liberal politics." (Though, of course, he doesn't mention it, he was a friend to Clintons while at Yale.) Of course now, Medved is better known as one of the most outspokenly right-wing film critics out there. Many will enjoy this book for the nostalgia but for me, it'll always be wonderful proof that nothing -- be it your politics, your bank account, the length of you hair, or whatever else -- is ever as permanent as you might think.

What happens when highschoolers grow up?
The mid 60's was a very confusing time in the 20th century. Drugs were a new experience to be tried, the Vietnam War was about to reach its peak, and the new activity was rebelling against the older generation. This book tells about what it was like and how each person lived in those times. But it also relates the people and their stories to generations after it.

The authors interviewed 30 people ten years after their graduation from Palisades High School in 1965. The interviewees are examples of every extreme; the quarterback and head cheerleader, the gang leader, the surfer, the intellectual and everyone in between. Interviews are not held in the usual question/answer form, but instead are written like a lecture or story as told by the interviewed person. This minimizes breaks and gives the reader a better feeling for each character so that by the end, you WILL feel as if you know all 30 of them.

Each interview is different and similar in their own ways. Most male interviews mention avoiding the draft to fight in the War. Most women comment on their views of the housewife, and everyone mentions drug use. But in the same ways that they are similar, I found them to be different as well. A few found religion in their travels, while others only found poverty. Many of the stories are surprising, and a few are just as you would assume such a person would be 10 years later. But no matter what the outcome, they are all entertaining (except for Jamie Kelso's, but you can find that out when you read the book).

This book gives an interesting, but true take on life. Those who were bound to fail end up succeeding, and those with the 4.0 GPA wind up owning a farm. It will give you a refreshed feeling after reading and most likely, make you curious as to the fates of those you once knew in school.

Hollywood Vs America
Published in Audio Cassette by Blackstone Audiobooks (1995)
Authors: Michael Medved and David Hilder
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Excellent documentation
Few people discuss the excellent documentation and cold, hard statistics Medved supplies - perhaps because they are irrefutable. And also because it's easier to make subtle charges of racism and bigotry. One reviewer even claimed Medved wants a world where everyone is white and Christian - Medved is Jewish and discusses his religion at length in the book!!! But then, you'd have to actually READ the book to know that...

Medved shows beyond the shadow of a doubt that Hollywood is more interested in what it thinks of itself than in anything else - true art or even money.

Strange that many of the same movie buffs who decry the dumbing-down of film within the past 15 years suddenly rush to defend Hollywood (even the trash!) in order to avoid agreeing with Medved.

An excellent book - an excellent tool for analyzing American culture.

Excellent book and a great read
The author is not only engaging and entertaining, he is also insightful. Why does Hollywood continue to release foul raunchy movies? They say that it's because people want to watch them. Medved points out that this isn't true. "Striptease", "Showgirls", and "Boogie Nights" all bombed at the box office, but Hollywood keeps churning out the trash. Compare that with the 1998 re-release of "Star Wars" - a 20-year-old movie on TV and VHS - which made more box office money in its 1998 re-release alone than ALL FIVE of that same year's Oscar-nominated films for best picture - COMBINED. Why? The "best films" were all rated R. The top grossing films of any year tend to be rated G - "Babe", "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers", "The Hunchback of Notre Dame", etc.

So why does Hollywood keep doing it? Medved explores why, with facts and figures.

Just the Facts.
Traveling through America and talking to people about entertainment, the general consensus you will find is that most people are sick of all the garbage they hear on the radio and see on television and the movies. Yet, it seems that no matter how much people complain, the situation doesn't improve much.

In HOLLYWOOD VS. AMERICAN, Michael Medved explores why Hollywood is no longer in tune with the rest of America. In doing so, he also illustrates (with great statistical accuracy) the ignorance behind all the excuses the entertainment establishment gives for producing much of the garbage it does. Yet, in doing so, Medved never questions the right of people to create the garbage they do. He displays that the establishment has forgotten that with rights come great responsibilities; responsibilites that many entertainers rather seem to ignore.

A great, informative, insightful, and memorable book.

Saving Childhood
Published in Hardcover by Zondervan (01 September, 1998)
Authors: Michael Medved and Diane Medved
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Review of Saving Childhood
Cracking the cover of Saving Childhood is like spreading a napkin across one's lap prior to a Thanksgiving feast. Michael and Diane Medved set the reader's table with a bountiful array of fascinating - sometimes disturbing statistics and quotations surrounding the many influences on childhood. Like a fly buzzing around the stuffed turkey however, is the Medved's consistent opinionated and judgmental interjection.

The book systematically addresses "the assault on innocence" by media, schools, peers, and parents with a barrage of statistics and quotes by specialists in related fields. Few are spared by the accusing Medved finger. Refreshingly, the targets of attack are not limited to one aspect of society, but rather proposes that the most ignorant entertainer is perhaps no more guilty of this assault than the permissive parent.

Educators, parents, caregivers, and just about anyone interested in social analysis and criticism will find Saving Childhood an entertaining, worthwhile read. However, these very same readers may also find themselves eventually rolling their eyes over the repeated, cutesy tales of the authors' own family. For those of us with children that walk in dirty sneakers rather than fly on angelic wings, the Medved's personal life may evoke mild nausea. Similarly, those that indulge in occasional tasteless humor may become defensive when they find the Medved finger pointing directly at them.

Nonetheless, the book's social and personal value far exceeds its minor quirks. The average adult reader will find the writing light and approachable, and will undoubtedly walk away with at the very least a new perspective on the subject; perhaps, the reader will even walk away a better person.

Preserving our children's childhoods should be our priority.
Michael and Diane Medved's new book "Saving Childhood" operates on the premise that the key elements of childhood innocence: security; a sense of wonder; and optimism are birthrights that elude many of today's children. Protecting these basic rights is the prescription the Medveds offer to counter the everyday assault by the media, schools, peers, and even parents themselves, that interfere with healthy development. This book offers solid, if somewhat idealistic advice for parents who feel they are parenting upstream. In this "age of enllightenment" today's children view wars on television, read about children killing other children, and develop dangerous eating disorders as young as the age of nine. It is difficult to argue with the Medved's assertion that children receive more information than they can process and still feel good about the world at large. I would recommend this book to any parent trying to shelter their children from the barrage of adult information aimed specifically at children. In our family, no day is ended without each of us thanking God for his blessings; an American flag flies in front of our house. Security, a sense of wonder, and optimism are worth fighting for for our children.

SAVING CHILDHOOD is a must read!
For all parents and those concerned about the effects of popular culture on the minds and hearts of their children, this is an essential book. The Medveds point out the perils of the "preparation" paradigm currently in vogue. According to this way of thinking, children must be prepared for the worst, in order to protect them. In realilty by telling children that the world is an evil place full of danger the "preparation" advocates are frightening them needlessly, destroying their innocence, and making them prematurely cynical. Sex education in kindergarten, distribution of condoms in junior high, debunking of religion in public schools, bad examples set by politicians including the president, are just a few of the topics which are explored in this timely and important book. SAVING CHILDHOOD succintly demonstrates that children's happiness depends upon optimism, innocence, and a sense of wonder The Medveds give practical tips and pointers on how to provide these three qualities for your children. I highly recommend this book..

The Hollywood Hall of Shame
Published in Hardcover by Putnam Pub Group (1984)
Authors: Harry Medved and Michael Medved
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Nowhere near as good as the Fifty Worst Films
It seemed clear that, in putting together a sequel to their successful and delightful Fifty Worst Films of all Times, the brothers Medved cut many a corner to meet a deadline. This volume falls far short of their previous work, though it is fairly entertaining in parts.

Some of the films included would be known only to the most avid film buffs - for example, silents, and two films in which Goebbels and Mussolini were involved with production. Where much of the success in the original 'worst films' was in that people either had seen the film or at least knew the genre well, there were few in this book that even 'rang a bell.'

A few entries give the impression that the Medveds originally had intended to include their brilliant "dialogue" and "rave reviews" sections. Instead, all seemed very hurried, and one had often to leave to one's imagination what actually happened on screen to any great extent. Many of the entries had to do with disastrous events surrounding a film's production.

It did stir a few memories: some of Elizabeth Taylor's turkeys, Liberace's "Sincerely Yours," the horrid lyrics to a song featured in a Kate Smith film, the dreadful presentation of "The Greatest Story ever Told." Yet most were completely strange to me, and I am not a youngster.

It's worth reading on a rainy day, but don't pay too much for the second hand copy.

Hollywood vs. America : Popular Culture and the War Against Traditional Values
Published in Hardcover by HarperCollins Publishers (01 October, 1992)
Author: Michael Medved
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