Cover image for Blowing the bloody doors off : and other lessons in life / Michael Caine.
Blowing the bloody doors off : and other lessons in life / Michael Caine.
First U.S. edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Hachette Books, 2018.
Physical Description:
xii, 273 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Personal Subject:


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
791.43028092 CAI Book Adult General Collection

On Order



Now in his 85th year, Hollywood legend Michael Caine shares wisdom and stories from his remarkable career in this "engrossing" memoir that "shines with positive energy" ( Library Journal , starred review).

One of our best-loved actors, Michael Caine has starred in over 100 films in his six-decade career, spanning classic movies like Alfie , Zulu , and The Italian Job (the inspiration for the book title) to playing Alfred opposite Christian Bale's Batman in Christopher Nolan's blockbuster Dark Knight trilogy. Caine has excelled in every kind of role--with a skill that's made it look easy.

Caine knows what success takes. He's made it to the pinnacle of his profession from humble origins. But as he says, "Small parts can lead to big things. And if you keep doing things right, the stars will align when you least expect it." Still working and more beloved than ever, Caine now shares everything he's learned-and "his fans will be rewarded, as will anyone seeking an enjoyable, inspirational read" ( Library Journal ).

Author Notes

Sir Michael Caine CBE has been Oscar-nominated six times, winning his first Academy Award for the 1986 film Hannah and Her Sisters and his second in 1999 for The Cider House Rules . He has starred in over one hundred films, becoming well-known for several critically acclaimed performances including his first major film role in Zulu in 1964, followed by films including The Ipcress Files , Get Carter , Alfie , The Italian Job , Dirty Rotten Scoundrels , and Educating Rita , and more recently The Dark Knight , Is Anybody There?, and Harry Brown . He was appointed a CBE in 1992 and knighted in 2000 in recognition of his contribution to cinema.

Married for more than 30 years, with two daughters and three grandchildren, he and his wife Shakira live in London and Surrey.

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Oscar-winning British actor Caine (What's It All About?) mines his long career for entertaining anecdotes and life lessons in this genial memoir, taking readers from his childhood in a London slum to his years as a struggling unknown-one studio canceled his contract because an executive thought he looked gay-to major roles in hits such as Alfie, Sleuth, and Batman Begins. Much of the book is blithe showbiz picaresque, stocked with A-listers including John Wayne and BeyoncAc and full of filmmaking pratfalls. ("The bees were shitting on us," he writes of a scene in The Swarm, which he cheerfully allows may be "the worst movie ever made.") From these vignettes, Caine distills advice on topics including acting mechanics ("Stand straight and you look younger; round your shoulders for instant aging") and success strategies ("You are always auditioning"), and delivers generic pep talks ("Any time you learn from a failure, it's a success"). His pensAces gain resonance from deeply felt passages on the grueling rejection and insecurity of an actor's life, the sting of being typecast as an "ignorant cockney bastard," and the immersion in craft and preparation that overcome obstacles. Caine's writing-funny, warm, down-to-earth-will captivate fans and casual readers alike. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Table of Contents

Introductionp. ix
Part 1 Starting Out
1 It Doesn't Matter Where You Startp. 3
2 Auditioning for Lifep. 23
3 Using the Difficultyp. 41
4 Doing the Right Thingsp. 55
Part 2 Making the Cut
5 Getting There Is Just the Startp. 77
6 The Rehearsal Is the Workp. 89
7 Less Is Morep. 105
8 Having Serious Funp. 119
9 Taking Directionp. 133
10 The Big Picturep. 149
Part 3 The Long Run
11 Being a Star (or Why I Never Wear Suede Shoes)p. 165
12 Rise and Fallp. 185
13 Being Decentp. 205
14 Don't Look Back (with a Few Exceptions)p. 223
15 Getting Old and Staying Youngp. 237
16 A Life in Balancep. 253
Epiloguep. 269
Acknowledgementsp. 272
Image Creditsp. 274