Off the Cliff by Becky Aikman
How the Making of Thelma & Louise Drove Hollywood to the Edge

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 2 Critic Reviews

On the surface, Off the Cliff sketches this one-in-a-million serendipity with breezy style; beneath it, this slice of movie history invites you to think about why it's one in a million at all.
-NPR

Synopsis

A lively and revealing behind-the-scenes look at the making of one of history's most controversial and influential movies, drawing on exclusive interviews with the cast and crew.

“You’ve always been crazy,” says Louise to Thelma, shortly after she locks a police officer in the trunk of his car. “This is just the first chance you’ve had to express yourself.”

In 1991, Thelma & Louise, the story of two outlaw women on the run from their disenchanted lives, was a revelation. Suddenly, a film in which women were, in every sense, behind the wheel. It turned the tables on Hollywood, instantly becoming a classic, and continues to electrify audiences as a cultural statement of defiance. But if the film’s place in history now seems certain, at the time its creation was a long shot. Only through sheer hard work and more than a little good luck did the script end up in the hands of the brilliant English filmmaker Ridley Scott, who saw its huge potential. With Scott on board, a team willing to challenge the odds came together—including the stars Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon and a fresh-faced up-and-coming actor named Brad Pitt, as well as legends like actor Harvey Keitel, composer Hans Zimmer, and old-school studio chief Alan Ladd Jr.—to create one of the most controversial movies of all time.
 
But before icons like Davis and Sarandon got involved, Thelma & Louise was just an idea in the head of Callie Khouri, a thirty-year-old music video production manager, who was fed up with working behind the scenes on sleazy sets. At four a.m. one night, sitting in her car outside the ramshackle bungalow in Santa Monica that she shared with two friends, she had a vision: two women on a crime spree, fleeing their dull and tedious lives—lives like hers—in search of a freedom they had never before been able to realize. But in the late 1980s, Hollywood was dominated by men, both on the screen and behind the scenes. The likelihood of a script by an unheard-of screenwriter starring two women in lead roles actually getting made was remote. But Khouri had one thing going for her—she was so inexperienced she didn't really know she would be attempting the nigh impossible. 

In Off the Cliff, Becky Aikman tells the full extraordinary story behind this feminist sensation, which crashed through barricades and upended convention. Drawing on 130 exclusive interviews with the key players from this remarkable cast of actors, writers, and filmmakers, Aikman tells an inspiring and important underdog story about creativity, the magic of cinema, and the unjust obstacles that women in Hollywood continue to face to this day.
 

About Becky Aikman

See more books from this Author
 
Published June 27, 2017 by Penguin Press. 317 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Political & Social Sciences, Humor & Entertainment, Arts & Photography.
Add Critic Review

Critic reviews for Off the Cliff
All: 2 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 0

Kirkus

Good
on Apr 16 2017

The book is enhanced by informative, brief biographies of key players and mini-essays on pertinent topics like the history of women in film. For fans of the iconic film, Aikman provides everything you wanted to know about it and then some.

Read Full Review of Off the Cliff: How the Making... | See more reviews from Kirkus

NPR

Above average
Reviewed by Genevieve Valentine on Jul 02 2017

On the surface, Off the Cliff sketches this one-in-a-million serendipity with breezy style; beneath it, this slice of movie history invites you to think about why it's one in a million at all.

Read Full Review of Off the Cliff: How the Making... | See more reviews from NPR

Rate this book!

Add Review
×