Out of print for more than 30 years, now available for the first time as an eBook, this is the controversial story of John Wooden's first 25 years and first 8 NCAA Championships as UCLA Head Basketball Coach. Notre Dame Coach Digger Phelps said, "I used this book as an inspiration for the biggest win of my career when we ended UCLA's all-time 88-game winning streak in 1974."

Compiled with more than 40 hours of interviews with Coach Wooden, learn about the man behind the coach. Click the Book to read the players telling their stories in their own words. This is the book that UCLA Athletic Director J.D. Morgan tried to ban.

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Interview (5/10)

by Tony Medley

I admit it. One of the reasons I give this better than a totally negative rating is because of the beauty of Sienna Miller, who can also act, thank you. She’s part of an unlikely teaming with Steve Buscemi (the “funny-looking guy” from 1996’s Fargo), who also directed.

This is an homage, part of a trilogy of remakes of films by Theo van Gogh, the great-grandnephew of Vincent van Gogh, who was brutally executed by an Islamic jihadist in 2004. The trilogy, of which this is the first, is called “Triple Theo.”

This is a two-person film in which journalist Pierre Peders (Buscemi) is assigned to interview pop diva, TV and movie star Katya (Miller). He claims to be a “serious journalist,” one who has covered wars and Washington. As such, he views himself as being above such fluff. Katya, on the other hand, is living a relatively self-destructive life of celebrity, booze, cigarettes, and drugs.

At the beginning I didn’t buy the dialogue. It’s pretty forced and contrived and I squirmed a lot during the first 45 minutes. As the film descends into darker territory, it gets more interesting and the last half hour of this 86-minute film is pretty good. The film against which all these two-people conversation movies is to be compared is My Dinner with Andre (1981), to which Interview, unfortunately, doesn’t hold a candle.

It’s also diminished by another of those derivative scenes in which there is instant, unexplained passion. They are talking with one another, then they kiss and without time for a blink, they are breathing passionately, attacking one another. I don’t know if van Gogh had a ridiculous scene like this in his original, but I imagine this is a Hollywood addition, because it’s pure Hollywood and pure poppycock.

Interview is filmed in the style of van Gogh using his crew. Led by Director of Photography Thomas Kist, van Gogh developed and perfected a fast-paced, forceful method of using three digital cameras running at all takes, with one camera trained on each character in these two-person dramas and one camera capturing middle and master shots.

There’s really no plot here. This is just two people who probe the depths of their psyches during an evening’s interview. What starts out as kidding and flirting slowly descends into a dark drama, a commentary on truth, ethics, and just how much one can trust a journalist.

There is some product placement. Apple, for instance, is clearly displayed as Katya’s computer. Another reprehensible part of the film is that both Katya and Pierre smoke. Whenever I see these dopey movie stars smoke in their films (Jon Travolta used to insist on smoking scenes), my eyes and lungs both start to bother me. Kudos to the MPAA for making smoking one of the things that can cause a film to get a more restrictive rating.

Since this unconvincing, contrived imitation only runs less than an hour and a half, Sienna Miller's stunning beauty and the last half almost make it worth seeing.