February 13, 2014

Lady Beware (1987)

Let's talk about a great movie that I don't think many people are aware of.

The recipe for it is really quite simple: Take a heaping spoonful of Fatal Attraction (which was actually released a month LATER), a few dollops of The Collector, sprinkles of Mannequin and wrap it up in a nice, cozy layer of "Skinemax". Bake at a million degrees, and you have:

Lady Beware.

I won't bore you with a synopsis. You can always look that up yourself....and, actually, the less you know about it, the better. Lady Beware is a lot of fun and Diane Lane really gets into her role. She's not always great, and at times, she's pretty terrible (her smoking is TOO obvious) but she has some great freak-out moments (the mirror scene) and she reaches a point of defiance that is really quite impressive - why aren't more drag queens inspired by this film?

Visually, everything is perfect - from the atmospheric Pittsburgh locations to the memorable production design. Diane Lane's loft apartment is pretty enviable, so you might just find yourself running out to purchase reams of Christmas lights and dozens of mannequins to decorate your home. I'm sure someone has a Lady Beware-inspired home somewhere in the world...right?

Trivia: It's important to note that Lady Beware was one of the first (if not the first) films of the legendary costume designer, Pat Field, who went on to fame and fortune with Sex and the City...although, it makes me laugh that her next project after this was He's My Girl.

I don't want to ruin anything for first time viewers, but here are a few other things to think about:
  • The moody, "erotic thriller"-style soundtrack. There is actually an official LP available. I have it, so why don't you go ahead and get one, too. They are always available on eBay. Great background music for crying in the bathtub.
  • The stereotypical, secondary gay character. Inspired by Mannequin? I had some problems with that guy.
  • Why does Diane Lane sometimes remind me of a young Kathleen Turner?
  • For Creepshow fans, the guy playing the grouchy curmudgeon who criticizes Diane's window display is famed Pittsburgh actor, Bingo O'Malley -  he played multiple roles in the Stephen King/"Jordy Verrill" segment. I thought that was pretty neat.
  • Come to think of it...a mash-up of Lady Beware and Mannequin would be pretty incredible. Emmy (Kim Cattrall) could have come to life and helped Katya (yes, Diane's character is named KATYA YARNO) during the climactic showdown.
  • I want to know why some sources say that Viveca Lindfors is in this movie? Yes, I care about these kind of things. I wonder who she would have played?
From Leonard Maltin's 2014 Movie Guide

February 12, 2014

Touching base.

Ahem. Testing. Hello?

Ah, yes, there you are. My apologies for being away for so long. No, no...I'm not mad at you. Things have been busy.

What? Oh. You've heard that one before. I see.

Well, to be honest...I've just neglected our relationship. You know how it can be. You don't?

I...let me finish, please. I need to explain, you see....what? What have I been up to?

Animal Crossing has still been a recurring object of entertainment in my home life...again, it's so incredibly relaxing, and after a long day at work and an even longer commute home, it's nice to just zone out. 

Have I watched anything? A few things here and there, but nothing life-changing...

...except for one thing. Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman

Years ago, I had a watched a few episodes from an earlier DVD release of the first 25 shows, but I gave up because I figured it was hopeless to get involved in a show that I would never, ever see the entire run of. Why bother investing your time in a few installments of a show that clocked a whopping 325 episodes! Flash forward: For my birthday, Hilly Blue got me the entire collection that was released by Shout Factory! and I haven't been the same since. Louise Lasser is absolutely, jaw-droppingly amazing. I had always been a fan of hers, but this blew my expectations out of the water. I'm speechless in my attempt at describing her performance in this role - equally strange, sympathetic, hilarious...her delivery is unique and completely and utterly exclusive to Louise Lasser. No one else in the world could play this role. What episode am I on? 147!

Music? Not much, really. But these two epics have been on constant repeat - Eartha Kitt, I Love Men and Pat Ast, Paul Jabara's Ocho Rios.

Let's see. Am I missing anything? Oh yes. Back in October, I finally saw the complete version of I Am Divine. It was great to finally see the finished piece after two years of research. I can't stress how much of a wonderful experience it was.

Toodles for now!