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. This is the only book that gives a true picture of the character of John Wooden and the influence of his assistant, Jerry Norman, whose contributions Wooden  ignored and tried to bury.

Compiled with more than 40 hours of interviews with Coach Wooden, learn about the man behind the coach. The players tell their their stories in their own words.

Click the book to read the first chapter and for ordering information. Also available on Kindle.

Flight (5/10)

by Tony Medley

Runtime 135 minutes.

Not for children.

In 1962, director Blake Edwards told the story of alcoholism better and shorter with Jack Lemmon and Lee Remick in Days of Wine and Roses. He only took 117 minutes and his ending was realistic.

Here, denzel Washington is an alcoholic druggie who heroically lands a plane in trouble. That takes place in the first half hour and it is compelling filmmaking by director Robert Zemeckis. It won't be much encouragement for those in the audience who are white knuckle flyers to overcome their fears of flying, though, because it hits everything that worries people about airplanes, and it's not just that you might be flying with an out of control, alcoholic pilot.

But during the next 115 minutes (just two minutes less than Edwards' entire movie) the film slows down considerably as Washington struggles (not so valiantly) with his alcoholism and drug addiction. There are some fine performances here by Washington, Kelly Reilly, who plays another alcoholic with whom denzel becomes involved, and Don Cheadle as the attorney trying to save Washington from himself.

There is a troubling scene in which Washington is roaring drunk, so his "protectors" call in his drug dealer, John Goodman, who has him snort three lines of cocaine, which immediately perks denzel up so he's no longer affected by his alcohol, which, up to that point, had him unable to stand up. Is cocaine an instant cure for being drunk?

The film deals with addiction in an interesting manner but unfortunately the ending is just too much Hollywood, unlike the unhappy ending of Days of Wine and Roses that really leaves the viewer thinking. I walked out of Flight  able to dismiss it completely due to the ending and its extraordinary length for such a thin story. Too bad.