Picks and Pans Review: Inherited Risk
Errol and Sean Flynn in Hollywood and Vietnam
by Jeffrey Meyers Reviewed
To fans, Errol Flynn was the swashbuckling rakehell of such movies as 1938’s The Adventures of Robin Hood. Unfortunately that’s how the actor saw himself as well, and because his life couldn’t come close to imitating his art, Flynn wasn’t comfortable within his own well-tanned skin.
Between superficial macho buddies and countless one-night stands came a series of tortured wives and girlfriends—two of whom said he raped them—and conflicted relations with his three children, including Sean, a combat photographer who was killed in Cambodia in 1971. Meyers wants to connect the sins of the father with the recklessness of his thrill-addicted son, but he wallows in Flynn Sr.’s loutishness. Sean Flynn may have been a walk-on in his father’s life, but he should have been a leading man in this book. (Simon & Schuster, $26)
Bottom Line: Flynn’s dark life eclipses the son