Book Review: Walt Disney by Neal Gabler

April 16, 2015

About:
Walt Disney: The Triumph of the American Imagination by Neal Gabler is a biography of this famous man. This is a long biography, but a must read for any Disney fan.

 

  • 912 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679757473

Book Review Walt Disney The Triumph of the American Imagination by Neal GablerMy rat­ing for Walt Disney: The Triumph of the American Imagination5

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Thoughts:
Walt Disney: The Triumph of the American Imagination by Neal Gabler is a well-researched biography. Mr. Gabler doesn’t put Walt Disney on a pedestal or takes his side on several issues, in fact he constantly calls him naïve, especially in business and politics. It almost seemed as if the author disagreed with some of Disney’s views and, subconsciously or not, wrote to that affect.

I felt that I got a good idea of what Walt Disney was like, a man full of vision, perfectionist and a control freak who can be a grumpy man and difficult to work with. Disney’s politics and his head butting with the unions (sometimes justifiably) also play a big part in the book and helps understand the man. I was surprised to learn that the man responsible for “the happiest place on earth” was not a very happy man himself.

I learned a lot from this book about the man and the company he built. I had no idea that for most of his life Disney was financially strapped and that his movies were box office bombs (for the most part). I was also surprised to learn that during World War II Disney mainly relied on government work to keep the company afloat and as a result, his work lost its edge.

The book will make you look at Disney features in a new light, weather artistically, cinematically or just because you knew the hard work and drama that went behind the scenes. Mr. Gabler does not paint Walt Disney as a saint or a sinner or a tyrant as many say, he tries to separate the man from the legend, good or bad.

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More Books by Neil Gabler

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Dis­claimer: I borrowed this book from the local library.
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