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I was really sorry to hear about Anne Bancroft’s death at 73 from cancer. She was an actress I liked very much. Like other fans, I was mesmerized by her performances in THE MIRACLE WORKER and THE GRADUATE, but my favorite movie of hers is 84 CHARING CROSS ROAD, in which she plays Helene Hanff, a feisty, opinionated, energetic New York booklover who has a lengthy and affectionate correspondence with a London bookstore located at the address that provides the title of the film. The film is based on a memoir by Hanff.
As I watched Bancroft-as-Hanff ordering deliciously large crates of books from England, and talking on the phone to the bookstore loudly and slightly nasally, and positively pop-eyed with book lust, I had a shock of recognition. Scenes at her books-are-taking-over-and-who-the-hell-cares? apartment made me want to just crawl into the movie and live there forever.