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.

Thumbnails Sep 12

by Tony Medley

Hope Springs (10/10): Meryl Streep lights up the screen in translating a deep, perceptive script by Vanessa Taylor in her first screenplay for a feature film. Well-directed by David Frankel, Streep and Tommy Lee Jones seem trapped in a loveless, sexless marriage, much to Streep's displeasure. Jones is one of the more disagreeable husbands one could hope to meet. While it is labeled as a romantic comedy, it's not very funny. This is more Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf  than it is Pillow Talk or When Harry Met Sally. The talk is frank, and the acting is mesmerizing, especially Streep.

The Odd Life of Timothy Green (8/10): Writer/director Peter Hedges brings the same magic he brought to About a Boy in 2002, to this touching film. Although there is a more than a hint of supernatural here (let's face it, little boys don't crawl out of the ground every day), CJ Adam combines being an 11-year-old boy with preternatural wisdom, but in a way that makes what you are watching almost credible.

Compliance (8/10): This is a tense, troubling, hard-to-watch film. I kept wanting to leave, but was almost magnetically attached to my seat. Writer/director Craig Zobel has created a plausible scenario, with outstanding preformances by Dreama Walker, Ann Dowd, and Pat Healy. There was only one part of the film that I thought too bizarre to believe that anybody would submit, but apparently this is based on fact and has actually happened over 70 times

Total Recall (8/10): A rip-snorting, nonstop, high tension experience that starts fast and ends faster. Kate Beckinsale's over-the-top performance that approaches camp is overshadowed by sparkling performances by Colin Farrell and Jennifer Biel.

Little White Lies (7/10): Writer/director Guillaume Canet shot this autobiographical film, clearly patterned on 1983's "The Big Chill, " as therapy for his breakdown after filming "Tell No One" in 2006. It is based on his circle of friends, even down to the gorgeous setting in Cap Ferrat, where they all hang. While there, the group, including Marion Cotillard, François Cluzet (a Dustin Hoffman lookalike), Gilles Lellouche, and several others interact during which their petits mouchoirs, their "little white lies" (petits mouchoirs really means little handkerchiefs) slowly bubble to the surface, threatening their heretofore placid existence. In French.

Hit and Run (6/10): Written and co-directed by star Dax Shepard, the film is replete with F-bombs and other coarse language as well as full frontal male and female nudity. The first 30 minutes dragged quite a bit with dialogue that seems forced. After that, the car chase starts and lasts for the rest of the film and it is more interesting. In a Q&A after my screening Shepard and Kristin Bell, his leading lady, continued dropping F-bombs in their answers to questions.

The Bourne Legacy (5/10): For 100 minutes, this is a slam-bang, humdinger of a movie. But then comes 30 minutes of a mindless chase through the Philippines, on foot and vehicle, clearly indicating that writer/director Tony Gilroy doesn't have a clue about where he's going. Worse, Gilroy abuses and disrespects his audience in the way he ends the film, akin to a Perils of Pauline serial, with the story never coming to a conclusion. I was surprised Gilroy didn't flash "tune in next year" before the end credits.

The Campaign (3/10): ): "I think they could appeal to what is more elevated in people instead of the common denominator." Marlon Brando on movies, 1955. Brando could have been talking about Will Ferrell, although this was years before Will's birth, because Ferrell appeals solely to the lowest common denominator. This could have been a devastating indictment of political campaigns, but it would have taken the talent of, oh, W. S. Gilbert who put the needle to British politicians in the late 19th Century. Ferrell apparently thinks acting like a nincompoop and using foul language equals comedy. Without all the bad words, this might have had some redeeming value, but Ferrell is so vulgar that it's off-putting and offensive. The feel-good ending wimps out, completely contradicting Ferrell's character which the entire film has exerted every effort to construct.