Many film critics argue that Hollywood churns out "escapist" films during times of great economic strife or war, because that's what the public demands. For example, look at all those frothy Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers musicals of the 30s. They're twirling and tapping their way into magnificent sets in glitzy ballroom gowns and dripping with diamonds, while unemployment reached epic highs in the country. Or the fact that the sentimental "How Green Was my Valley "won the Oscar for best picture while Hitler and his cohorts were merrily butchering their way into Europe. Having said that, I am not sure how much I adhere to that theory. After all, some of my favorite American films that were made during the era of Watergate and the Vietnam War have never been more poignant in their social and political content. (Apocalypse Now, the Godfather, Taxi Driver, to name but a few).
All that brings me to a much more lightweight topic. That of chick flicks. They're not my favorite films of all time but definitely a guilty pleasure from time to time. If you wanna talk about escapism in Hollywood movies, nowhere has it succeeded more than in the area of "chick flicks" and that is especially true around Valentine's Day. As I type this, the uber chick flick "He's just not that into you", starring Drew Barrymore, is number one at the box office and next week, one day before Valentine Day itself, we have the film version of "Confessions of a Shopaholic" starring Isla Fischer and that dreamboat matinee idol, the millenium's answer to Troy Donahue, Hugh Dancy.
I personally think Valentine Day is a ridiculous holiday made to make you feel inadequate if you are dateless or even if you have a date, if you don't engage in some grand outing at an expensive restaurant with super corny "symbols" of romance like candles and flowers. As for me, my idea of a good time with my loved one is to curl up with him on the sofa, maybe eating out of a few chinese food boxes and watching Real Time with Bill Maher. If you are going to get together with your girlfriends for some martinis and chick flicks instead, may I suggest the following.
My top ten favorite chick flicks of all time (I intentionally left out the too obvious weepies like Terms of Endearment and Steel Magnolias, by the way, we are all vulnerable enough as it is on Valentine Day without these tearjerkers pushing us over the edge):
Don't mess with Angela Bassett. She makes the "woman scorned" look like Polyanna. Grrrrrr...
9. The Women
Sorry gals, I mean the 1939 version so you're going to have to make do with black and white. I mean, come on, why go for burger (Eva Mendes? Meg Ryan? Puh-leeeeze) when you can go for steak (Norma Shearer, Joan Crawford)
It's worth watching only for the hilarious performances of Glenn Close and Bette Midler, who respectively steal the show from under Nicole Kidman's skinny legs.
Because I am a child of the 80s, and Alexis Arquette's rendition of the Boy George hit "Do you really want to hurt me" is priceless.
Okay so the Audrey Hepburn character is really supposed to be a drag queen while the George Peppard character is a stand in for the very gay Truman Capote. Talk about Hollywood escapism! Nevertheless, that iconic style and music, come on, you gotta love it...
5. Pretty Woman
Cause honestly, forget candles and roses. You really wanna get a woman's juices flowing. Unleash her on Rodeo Drive with a limitless credit card!!! That shopping montage was more orgasmic than Richard Gere standing erect in his underwear and ankle cuffs in American Gigolo.
Okay technically not a movie. I mean the 1995 BBC TV series starring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle. In my humble opinion, the best Elizabeth and Darcy EVER. A delicious mini-series.
I know, I know, you think I picked this because of the famous orgasm scene in the deli but honestly no. And I feel like those douches who say they read Playboy for the artickles only but seriously, I just love love love the script in this movie. That's what makes it timeless and just as funny (if not more) today than when it came out.
If you are familiar with Pride and Prejudice, you will realize that this is a wonderful, comical retelling of the story of Elisabeth Bennett and Lord Darcy, set in modern times. I almost didn't submit it because you know, I mean, Renee Zellweger? Like, uh, REALLY? But at least it has Colin Firth. Swooooonnnnn...
And the number one chick flick of all times? Are you kidding me? You couldn't guess??? But of course, LADIES, it's none other than:
Yes, I dressed up to go see this movie with my girlfriends. Shoot me. No wait, I've already shot myself.
|Recently by Niki Tehranchi||Comments||Date|
|First day of school|
|Aug 15, 2012|
|What would you say?|
|Jan 31, 2012|
|May 11, 2011|
|نسرین ستوده: زندانی روز||Dec 04|
|Saeed Malekpour: Prisoner of the day||Lawyer says death sentence suspended||Dec 03|
|Majid Tavakoli: Prisoner of the day||Iterview with mother||Dec 02|
|احسان نراقی: جامعه شناس و نویسنده ۱۳۰۵-۱۳۹۱||Dec 02|
|Nasrin Sotoudeh: Prisoner of the day||46 days on hunger strike||Dec 01|
|Nasrin Sotoudeh: Graffiti||In Barcelona||Nov 30|
|گوهر عشقی: مادر ستار بهشتی||Nov 30|
|Abdollah Momeni: Prisoner of the day||Activist denied leave and family visits for 1.5 years||Nov 30|
|محمد کلالی: یکی از حمله کنندگان به سفارت ایران در برلین||Nov 29|
|Habibollah Golparipour: Prisoner of the day||Kurdish Activist on Death Row||Nov 28|