Praise for Declan Burke: “Burke shows again that he’s not just a comic genius, but also a fine dramatic writer and storyteller.” – Booklist. “Proust meets Chandler over a pint of Guinness.” – Spectator. “Among the most memorable books of the year, of any genre.” – Sunday Times. “A hardboiled delight.” – Guardian. “Imagine Donald Westlake and Richard Stark collaborating on a screwball noir.” – Kirkus Reviews. “A cross between Raymond Chandler and Flann O’Brien.” – John Banville.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Digested Read: THE ELEPHANT TO HOLLYWOOD by Michael Caine

Yep, it’s that time of the week again. Herewith be the latest in an increasingly improbable line of Digested Reads, aka the Book du Jour in 300 words. This week: THE ELEPHANT TO HOLLYWOOD by Michael Caine. To wit:

“Moy nayme is Maurice Micklewhite. Not a lot of people know that.
  “Whoops, no - let’s start again …
  “Moy nayme is Moichal Cayne.
  “Early years, blah-de-blah, ’umble beginnings, rhubarb, loverly jubbly.
  “So - Zulu. ‘At one hundred yards! Volley fire, present! Aim! Fire!’ Loverly.
  “That Johnny Foreigner doesn’t much loike cold steel up ’is jacksey, does he?
  “Alfie, eh? The stories oi could tell … Oh, roight, that’s the whole point, innit?
  “Birds, booze, birds … Nice blummin’ film it was, too.
  “Wot’s that? The Italian Job? ‘’Ang abaht, boys - oi’ve got an idear.’ Think Lawrence Olivier could’ve delivered a line loike that? Fat flummin’ chance.
  “So where wuz we? Roight, yeah - Get Carter. ‘Yer a big man but yer in bad shape. Wiv me it’s a full-time job. Now be’ave.’ Think Shakespeare could’ve written lines like that? Be’ave.
  “The Man Who Would Be King, eh? That Connery, he’s a caution. The stories I could tell … Scottish, though. Can’t be ’elped. Least said, soonest mended, as my dear old sainted mother used to say.
  “The Eagle has Landed. Me, play a Kraut? Yer ’avin’ a larf, aintcha?
  “Yeah, so, ’Ollywood. Fame, fortune, blah, rhubarb, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. That Steve Martin, eh? ’Ad us in stitches, he ’ad. He was funny then, mind.
  “Did I mention the Oscars? Both of ’em? Think Olivier’d win two -- Oh, roight.
  “Okay, so that’s all the stuff we covered in the first autobiography. Now for the new gear …
  “Roight, so ’ere’s a few of me favourite recipes. Food, eh? Loverly jubberly.
  “And ’ere’s just a few of me favourite films. Films, eh? Loverly.
  “Batman, yeah. ‘Some men just want to watch the world burn, sir.’ Connery, mainly. Scots git.
  “Wot’s that? Inception? Nah, mate, not a bleedin’ clue.
  “The End.”

  The Digested Read, in one line: “’Ang abaht boys, I’ve got the same blummin’ idear as last time!”

  This article was first published in the Evening Herald.


Anonymous said...

Oh Dec, these make me laugh, they really do. And save us, they save us so.

seana said...

That was loverly, that was.

adrian said...


I noticed that Corporal Jones from Dads Army slipped in there.

I'm desperate to read the Jaws IV chapter.

Sean Patrick Reardon said...

"Blame it an Rio" Bologna and Caine should have been the next Lewis and Martin. The only thing I remember about that movie was the way hot daughter.

What about " Ejacoitin' Riota" ?

arshad said...
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