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Notting Hill Editions

Cary Grant’s Suit

Cary Grant’s Suit

Nine Movies That Made Me the Wreck I Am Today

by Todd McEwen

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North by Northwest isn’t about what happens to Cary Grant, it’s about what happens to his suit. The suit has the adventures, a gorgeous New York suit threading its way through America. The suit, Cary inside it, strides with confidence into the Plaza Hotel. Nothing bad happens to it until one of the greasy henchmen grasps Cary by the shoulder. We’re already in love with this suit and it feels like a real violation.”

Todd McEwen grew up in Southern California, so his head was hopelessly messed with by the movies. As the son of relatively normal people, Todd had no in with Hollywood, a mere thirteen miles away, yearn and try as he might.

This is a kid who loved the movies so much, he got up at 4:30 in the morning to watch Laurel and Hardy. A kid who insisted on his birthday that his father project 8mm cartoons onto the family’s dining room curtains so they could be slowly parted, just like at a real cinema.

This is a kid who liked to leave the movie and trudge up hundreds of dangerous iron steps to visit the lugubrious and always surprised projectionist. This is a kid who, years later, watched Chinatown over 60 times. 

A love letter to old Hollywood, this is a book for anyone interested in film. Movies discussed include The Wizard of Oz, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, To Catch a Thief, The 39 Steps, White Christmas, Casablanca, Chinatown, North by Northwest, and many more.

Additional Book Information

Series: Notting Hill Editions
ISBN: 9781912559404
Pages: 168
Publication Date:


Todd McEwen's new book — a memoir about his love of film — is a quirky, chewy gallimaufry contains a small jewel, a little masterpiece of a chapter, 'Cary Grant's Suit'. . . . If I were compiling a new Oxford Book of Essays I'd include 'Cary Grant's Suit' alongside Samuel Johnson, William Hazlitt, and Joan Didion. It's digressive, surprising, delightful.
—Ian Sansom, The Telegraph (UK)

A hilarious and morose invocation of a lost world. Anyone who has ever been movie-mad will relish this irrepressibly digressive, surprise-filled, exquisitely written memoir (sort of). I certainly did.
—Phillip Lopate

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