Before she became a super-star with I Love Lucy, Lucille Ball was an honest-to-goodness movie star who appeared in dozens of films, beginning as a chorus girl and extra, moving on to supporting player, and finally emerging as a star in her own right of such films as The Big Street, in which she was teamed above the title with Henry Fonda. Ball displayed her comic gifts – although she was more than "just" a fine comedienne – in film after film, bolstering mediocre efforts and complimenting good ones such as Street, in which she gives an affecting, memorable portrait of a spoiled, frightened singer who is scared she'll never walk again and takes it out on everyone around her, especially the man who is devoted to her. This book looks at every film that Ball appeared in before, during, and after Lucy, everything from The Affairs of Annabelle to Mame. You'll even read about the film she once made with Boris Karloff! Ms. de la Hoz supplies synopses, sample reviews, her own background notes and critique, and loads and loads of photos. This is a huge, heavy, coffee table book on thick paperstock.
Verdict: Lucy fans should pounce! ***1/2.