Let's have some awful time together!
When I was in high school I tried to watch a lot of indie films, a lot of foreign films. I wanted to watch anti-war documentaries that implicated the US in an unlawful war, featuring dear quotes from former CIA analyst Ray McGovern. I wanted to watch old films that starred Ugly Bette Davis turned Beautiful (Now, Voyager). The movies had to have scores that rivaled Bernard Herrmann’s. The movies had to feel urgent, frantic, a little broken. There had to be dolor, tears shed after money or love was lost, after family was abandoned, slaughtered, disinherited.
I was a teenager, after all.
But in spite of everything– or because of– I ended up becoming unexpectedly obsessed with Legally Blonde.
Now. I am not Elle Woods, nor was meant to be…1 But in a world that still dismisses chick flicks as something used to torture the Basic Boyfriend archetype and to placate the Average Female, I like to think of Elle Woods as a sort of mythic creature, like a unicorn, whose goodness and glitter shines in a cynical world. And then I kind of gross myself out by thinking that I need something to be glittery and good.
So, what prompted this entry? Did I just wake up one day and say, “I want to write about Legally Blonde“?2
In the interest of posterity, I say this now: sometimes things haven’t gone my way in terms of work, in terms of making ends meet, in terms of a lot of things. And I think to myself, “Is this what I dreamed of as a teenager, watching films and imagining a better life for myself?”
The answer, of course, is yes–
“To have in this uncertain world some stay which cannot be undermined, is of the utmost consequence.” –Mary Wollstonecraft
And, of course:
“No more boring suits, no more pantyhose, no more trying to be something that I’m just not.” — Elle Woods
1 Yes, that is a “Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock” allusion, okay?
2 Legally Blonde fans, do you see what I did there? Did you?