Review: James Ellroy @ Bloomsbury Theatre

Franco Milazzo
By Franco Milazzo Last edited 100 months ago
Review: James Ellroy @ Bloomsbury Theatre

(c) Marion Ettlinger
LA Confidential author James Ellroy has never been accused of being a shrinking violet, no sirree. Considering how this bombastic Beethoven-loving author turned around a past of crime and sexual misdeeds, he’s more akin to Clockwork Orange’s Alex. This “demon dog” demagogue is back in London, this time at the Bloomsbury Theatre deigning to be interviewed by Time Out’s Chris Moss. Eschewing his classic opening speech, he begins with three animated readings from his new memoir The Hilliker Curse - his legs well apart as he stands hunkered over the book - before taking questions from Moss.

We say interviewed but tonight this dog took Moss for a walk. Ellroy is completely shameless, replying to Moss’ questions with well-rehearsed sycophancy, sophistry and self-promotion. He freely quotes TS Eliot, calls England “the home of the world’s greatest language” and tells us that the English are the only people he knows who clamour to buy books when they come out in hardback. More blatant hints are dropped: “I have a vibe. Everybody here is going to get laid tonight. If they buy 1,000 copies of my latest book, they will get to have unlimited sex with each and every person they desire. If they buy 2,000, I will give them a special dispensation to get into heaven.”

When asked about the poor reviews for his latest book (Moss bravely mentions that one reviewer compares reading it to bad sex), Ellroy reprimands him. "My message to book critics is ‘fuck you all’. This is the diary of a heterosexual red-blooded right-wing man very much outside the ken of these ironic times. As the old joke goes, I want to find the guy who invented sex and ask him what he's working on now. If you get the joke, get my book. If you don't get the joke, you are one dumb motherfucker.”

Best of all, there's some juicy gossip on his upcoming projects: a new series on Discovery this Autumn and a new quartet which will set characters from his last seven fiction books in LA on the day of the Pearl Harbour bombing. Considering it took Ellroy over fourteen years to write his last trilogy, we will have to treat this news as off the record, on the QT, and very hush-hush.


The Bloomsbury Theatre recently hosted Time Out's Laugh Out Loud Live.

Other events at the Bloomsbury Theatre

Last Updated 08 October 2010