Diane Keaton periodically feels bad around her neck. As she defines in “Let’s just Say It wasn’t Pretty,” she likewise occasionally feels bad about her self-described thin hair, the downward slope of she eyes and various various other physical functions that have begun to crinkle or buckle due to the fact that of the ruthlessness that time. Yet Diane Keaton refuses to feeling bad about one really important thing: put on turtlenecks.

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“Turtlenecks are an especially underrated,” she to write in her 2nd memoir, a candid yet rambling treatise on aging and also beauty. “Buy one. I challenge you. . . . Turtlenecks cushion, shield, and also insulate a person from harm.” A couple of sentences later, however, she cautions: “If it transforms out the you start to stay turtlenecks as regularly as ns do, and also you’re mine age, and also you’re not Cary Grant, you will certainly run the hazard of receiving a same amount that criticism.”

As the flag bearer because that the necktie-and-bowler-hat format she pioneered in “Annie Hall” (1977), Keaton plainly knows the her illustration elicits solid opinions. (The Oscar-winner recalls the moment when she realized she’d come in fifth in an digital list that “Top 10 mrs Celebrities Who room Ugly No issue What Hollywood Says.”) The reality that she’s topic to much more public scrutiny than many ladies in their late 60s — you know, the ones that haven’t formerly dated Warren Beatty or Al Pacino — may make her insecurities more pronounced, however it doesn’t do them less relatable. Any kind of woman of a details age will most likely see reflections of her own self-doubt in the critical lashings come which Keaton topics herself in this pages, lashings the seem extra-unnecessary considering how luminous the “Something’s Gotta Give” star remains. Yet even if castle relate to Keaton’s struggles, those female reader of a particular age still might feel disappointed by this book, which meanders with too plenty of apropos-of-nothing anecdotes while giving too little in the method of genuine insight.


"Let"s just Say the Wasn"t Pretty" by Diane Keaton (Random House/Random House)

“Let’s simply Say It no Pretty” could have been a cogent comment on aging native the view of someone fighting a Hollywood system that marginalizes maturity. Instead, the an regularly too-flighty collection of essays the la-di-das its method toward noticeable conclusions, favor the fact that attractiveness come in plenty of forms and colors, or that “while smiling is lover . . . Laughing is beautiful.” That may be true, however it’s also something most civilization knew prior to they opened up Keaton’s book.

Keaton deserves praise and a few feminist fist bump for having actually the guts to attend to subjects that most women, renowned or not, choose to sweep under the nearest area rug, indigenous female baldness to are afraid of death to the inability to comment on such matters through colleagues. “Sometimes i wish I might talk to mine contemporaries about how castle grappling through their an elderly years,” she writes. “Do they wake up every morning and, favor me, watch in the mirror v a big sigh? perform they? do they ask us what old age is for? ns do.”

That Keaton is questioning those concerns so publicly is admirable. But in the actress’s well-intentioned yet ultimately trifling attempt to come increase with meaningful answers, she falls brief in a means that even the highest, thickest turtleneck can not hide.

Chaney is a pop culture writer who contributes generally to The Washington Post.


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Jen Chaney Jen Chaney is a pop society writer and also critic. follow
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