Eleanora Fagan, aka Billie Holliday
(April 7, 1915 – July 17, 1959)
Our TBT is dedicated to “Strange Days” (1995), the “sexy kinetic thriller” and feminist gem which was directed by Kathryn Bigelow and co-written by two dudes, James Cameron and Jay Cocks (insert joke here). The film portrays a perilous time when violence and lawlessness were rampant and technology was used to satisfy society’s desperate quest for escapism and most base urges. Sound familiar?
As leading lady Mace, Angela Bassett is a thing of wonder and beauty. She’s gorgeous, strong, smart, sexy and self-possessed.
A raw, pre-Licks Juliette Lewis is Faith, the dysfunctional flipside of Mace: a tragically beautiful hot mess. Both women are doing their best to navigate what many thought would be the ‘end of days’ — New Year’s Eve 1999.
And of course, Ralph Fiennes is….damned fine (even as an oily virtual reality dealer). There are also plenty of hot character performances by thespians who later became well-known faces: Vincent D’Onofrio (where Brooklyn at?); Tom Sizemore, Glenn Plummer (in a brilliant and timely turn as militant rapper Jeriko One), William Fichtner, Josef Summer, Richard Edson and Canadian Michael Wincott.
There’s a lot going on here. Social turmoil, police brutality, technology, the economy, race, America’s general agitation on the eve of the new millennium. This dystopian thriller is smarter and more interesting story than a lot of what we see lately. First off, it’s set in an Los Angeles that actually looks like L.A.: multi-cultural and multi-racial….throughout the film, not just the scenes of poverty or violence. The fact that there is a militant rapper whose gripes with the system are presented as legit seems astounding in retrospect. (The film was released only 17 days after the verdict in O.J. Simpson’s trial.) Last but not least, this film represents the best of feminism — that which shows women as they really are: are equally capable of the best and worst of what it is to be human.
If you don’t do anything else the rest of the day, read this little ditty:
Here’s Why Female-Driven Films Are Important Right Now
by filmmaker Alexis O. Korycinski
Indeed….what she said (so well). For now, let’s just stick with business. I suspect that, as with much cultural progress facing futile resistance these days, the money will win out in the end. Women spend a lot of money going to the movies; neglecting that audience/market segment is simply idiotic. And I, for one, am not an idiot. That is all.
Maya Angelou (4.4.28 – 5.28.14)
“My great hope is to laugh as much as I cry; to get my work done and try to love somebody and have the courage to accept the love in return.”
“You are the sum total of everything you’ve ever seen, heard, eaten, smelled, been told, forgot – it’s all there. Everything influences each of us, and because of that I try to make sure that my experiences are positive.”
“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”
Well played, lovely lady.
Thank you for shining your brave, elegant, brilliant, passionate, sassy, truthful light on us.
Enjoy the next leg of your journey!
Swiss surrealist artist H.R. Giger was a king of erotomechancis. This man’s mind….wow.
He created the iconic alien of the ‘Alien’ film franchise, created murals for the Alien prequel ‘Prometheus,’ among other very cool work in films and music (including album artwork for many and even a custom microphone stand for Jonathon Davis of the band Korn). His vision of biomechanics made the relationship between (wo)man and machine incredibly sexy, dripping with the promise of inhuman pleasure. In a 1979 interview, Giger said: “My paintings seem to make the strongest impression on people who are, well, who are crazy. If they like my work they are creative … or they are crazy.” Count me in.
Enjoy the next leg of your adventure, Mr. Giger.
Happy Birthday, Lady.
She has one of the most beautiful voices ever recorded
(no shouting, shrieking or vocal contortionism required).
Thank you, thank you, thank you for letting your light shine!
Venezuelan artist Rafael Araujo creates exquisite, incredibly complex art using math as a foundation — but he doesn’t use electronics to create these pieces. He uses a ruler and a protractor to translate lines, spirals and helixes into haunting images that defy gravity and blast our sense of scale and space. That’s what’s up.