Phallic Frenzy

Phallic Frenzy
Phallic Frenzy

Phallic Frenzy

Ken Russell and His Films
By Joseph Lanza


384 Pages, 6 x 9

Formats: EPUB, PDF, Mobipocket

EPUB, $9.99 (US $9.99) (CA $12.99)

ISBN 9781569764824

Rights: WOR

Chicago Review Press (Aug 2007)


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Chronicling the bizarre life of a maverick filmmaker
A biography of director Ken Russell that details the wild ideas, surreal moments, personal faith, and cavalcade of colorful personalities surrounding this eccentric filmmaker—on and off the set. Best known for the acclaimed movies Altered States, The Devils, Gothic, The Music Lovers, Tommy, and Women in Love, Russell redefined cinema in the 1960s, 70s and 80s, working with magnetic actors like Jack Nicholson, Michael Caine, Ann-Margret, William Hurt, Gabriel Byrne, and Vanessa Redgrave. Moments of Russell’s career are highlighted in this intimate biography, including how creative differences between Russell and producer Robert Stigwood stopped production of a movie version of Evita, how he creatively staged the love duet between Faust and Helen over a bowl of pasta in the opera Mephistopheles, and how Alan Bates and Oliver Reed compared their penis size for the nude wrestling scene in Women in Love.


"Joseph Lanza knows more about my life than I do!"  —Ken Russell

"A lively and explicit biography."  —

"A solid, long-overdue reconsideration of director Ken Russell's horrific surrealism."  —PLAY

"It makes for a thrilling read—it vibrates, shimmies, pounds down the pavement of every page."  —Alternative Film Guide

"The core features are discussed in exhaustive detail, blending close analysis with lively anecdote . . . [Lanza] has delved extensively into the more colorful aspects of his subject's life."  —Book Review Digest

"Everything you ever wanted to know—and more—about the wild child of Cinema Britannia."  —Financial Times

Author Biography

Joseph Lanza is the author of numerous books, including Elevator Music: A Surreal History of Muzak, Easy-Listening and Other Moodsong; Fragile Geometry; Russ Columbo and the Crooner Mystique; and Vanilla Pop: Sweet Sounds from Frankie Avalon to ABBA. He lives in Jersey City, New Jersey.