Hopper : A Savage American Journey

3.24 (156 ratings by Goodreads)
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As unconventional a biography as Dennis Hopper was a man, Hopper: A Journey into the American Dream by Tom Folsom charts his roller coaster life and career through the lens of the landscape of American popular culture.

The chopper-riding hippie outlaw in Easy Rider. The prophetic madman in the jungle in Apocalypse Now. The terrifying psychopath in Blue Velvet. The kid gone wrong in Rebel Without a Cause. The actor taken under the wing of James Dean, a friendship that set Dennis Hopper on his path to becoming a star. A quintessentially American dreamer longing to be the next Orson Welles. The hell-raising director who revolutionized Hollywood.

Dennis Hopper's extraordinary journey takes him to superhero highs and plummeting lows. Capturing the magic and the madness of his American Dream, Hopper is a wild ride through Dennis's many lives. Written in a rebel spirit, complemented with iconic photographs, and packed with insights from his fellow actors, artists, and friends, Hopper tells the story of a half-century of rebellion waged at the edge of pop culture.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 336 pages
  • 149.86 x 226.06 x 25.4mm | 113.4g
  • HarperCollins Publishers Inc
  • It Books
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Halftones Throughout
  • 0062206958
  • 9780062206954
  • 1,516,601

Review quote

"Guns, motorcycles, mug shots, drugs, paintings, madness. Even by Hollywood standards, Dennis Hopper led an extraordinary life...Tom Folsom structures Hopper, his book about the man, in a time-bending, sensational style reminiscent of Hopper's most out-there projects." -- Details "Tom Folsom tears through the life of Dennis Hopper in Hopper: A Journey into the American Dream." -- Vanity Fair "Rollicking." -- GQ "Folsom has neatly framed actor Dennis Hopper." -- Wall Street Journal "Mr. Folsom plays the part of [Hopper's] spiritual medium, taking us through each chapter of the Kansas-born, James Dean-worshipping, psychedelic psychotic's life, describing exactly what was going through the mind of the semi-tragic American almost-hero at each juncture." -- New York Observer "Folsom carries the reader on a caffeine-and-other-substance-fueled ride." -- New York Post "Folsom does an admirable job capturing Hopper's manic and spirited personality in prose." -- Publishers Weekly "Hip...frank...a rich portrayal of an unconventional, free-wheeling thinker whose checkered experiences shock and beguile on the page." -- Kirkus Reviews (starred review) "Fortunately for him, Dennis Hopper has gotten the biographer he deserves. Which is to say, Folsom's gonzo prose pulsates with Hopper's manic energy and fits his madness like a glove." -- Peter Biskind, New York Times bestselling author of Easy Riders, Raging Bulls "Tom Folsom's Hopper is an electric and rollicking, tour de force profile of Hollywood's great outlaw chameleon. All the wild-eyed stories and high-octane pathos in these pages make me miss the edgy, `grand artiste' Hopper anew. A knockout book!" -- Douglas Brinkley, New York Times bestselling author of Cronkite "Dennis did a lot for motorcycling with his movie Easy Rider. Folsom has written a book that shows Dennis's life like it was: crazy but brilliant." -- Ralph "Sonny" Barger, author of the New York Times bestseller Hell's Angel and former head of the Oakland chapter of the Hell's Angels "Essential reading for anyone interested in Dennis Hopper, the explosive sixties, Hollywood, American cinema, and the art of the twentieth century. But watch out-this visceral book puts you right in it, and some of it is jaw-dropping." -- Philippe Mora, director of Mad Dog Morgan, starring Dennis Hopper "What a terrific book about Dennis Hopper-he would have loved it and hated it. Beautifully written, stunningly accurate, Hopper captures all the wonderful and terrifying contradictions of the sweet, sad, funny, angry, and loving man that was Dennis." -- Henry Jaglom, actor, playwright, and director of Tracks, starring Dennis Hopper "Dennis Hopper was unlike any human I've ever met: consumed with passion for his subject, aesthetically brave, yet possessing a gentle heart. Though I would have said it couldn't be done, Tom Folsom has captured the real Dennis." -- Karen Black, actress and Dennis Hopper's costar in Easy Rider
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Back cover copy

Easy Rider. Apocalypse Now. Blue Velvet. Rebel Without a Cause.

An unflinching adventure through American pop culture, Hopper is a wild ride amid the many lives of Hollywood outlaw Dennis Hopper--mentored by James Dean, a collaborator with Andy Warhol, a confidant of Elvis Presley, a favorite of Charles Manson. Hopper races full speed ahead to the decadent heights of fame as the visionary director of Easy Rider crashes and burns in drug-addled madness in the desert . . . only to reemerge in one of the greatest Hollywood comebacks of all time.
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About Tom Folsom

Tom Folsom is the author of the New York Times bestseller The Mad Ones: Crazy Joe Gallo and the Revolution at the Edge of the Underworld. Folsom is also a writer, director, and producer of documentaries, and his work has appeared at Sundance and on A&E and Showtime. He lives in New York City with his wife.
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Review Text

"Guns, motorcycles, mug shots, drugs, paintings, madness. Even by Hollywood standards, Dennis Hopper led an extraordinary life...Tom Folsom structures Hopper, his book about the man, in a time-bending, sensational style reminiscent of Hopper's most out-there projects." Details
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Rating details

156 ratings
3.24 out of 5 stars
5 13% (20)
4 26% (40)
3 40% (63)
2 15% (24)
1 6% (9)
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