Christopher Sandford

Christopher Sandford is a British-born writer who now makes his home in the Pacific Northwest. He's the author of many books, including Union Jack, a bestselling account of John F. Kennedy's special relationship with the United Kingdom.

Posts by Christopher Sandford

The Manchurian Candidate Is a Neglected Masterpiece

In 1959, when Richard Condon published his political thriller The Manchurian Candidate, he took a topical idea and ran amok with it. The idea was that during the Korean War a platoon of GIs had been captured by the Chinese, brainwashed (“not just washed, but dry-cleaned”), and released back home to do the enemy’s bidding. Continue Reading...

The two lives of Steve McQueen

Someone once said of Steve McQueen (1930–80) that his range as an actor was deep but not very broad. All right, I admit it—I said it in my 2001 biography of the all-American star who still looms over Hollywood like a sort of male equivalent of the Statue of Liberty, more than 40 years after his untimely death. Continue Reading...

Soylent Green takes place in 2022, which is nice

According to an old Hollywood commonplace, nothing can beat the plot of a good sci-fi film when it comes to predicting the future. Many of the promotional taglines that accompany these features assure us that, should we invest in a ticket, we’ll be “entertained” and “educated,” or even “enlightened,” by a product that “presciently signifies the all-but-inescapable fate of our planet” (2012), that warns of a future that “looks, feels, and almost tastes and smells like a nightmare vision of our times” (1984), or that offers a “harsh but searingly urgent” glimpse of the overall prospects for mankind (Blade Runner). Continue Reading...