Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The Notorious Bettie Page ... A Nice Holiday Gift ...

The holidays are coming ... what better gift for a Bettie Page fan than the movie? Here's the link : )

The Notorious Bettie Page

Editorial Reviews

The cult pin-up idol Bettie Page gets the full-fledged biopic treatment in The Notorious Bettie Page, a movie that somehow seems as tame and innocent as the naughty photographs Bettie made in the 1950s. After a few scenes of Bettie growing up, the film quickly leads us to her more-or-less glory years, when she posed for countless peekaboo photos and some nudie films. These would make her an underground star for decades--long after she gave up modeling for religion, in fact. Gretchen Mol, a premature starlet in a redemptive role, does nicely at suggesting Bettie's too-trusting nature, maintaining her equipoise in a sleazy world. Her nude scenes are as liberated and no-sweat as those old nudist films always wanted people to believe. Director Mary Harron plays most of the film in the black-and-white that Bettie thrived in, which seems fitting enough (although the Kodachrome-bright color interludes are welcome). There's an air of "Ed Wood" about the project, and Harron maintains a similarly jovial tone, but the film does have a tendency to fall into the and-then-this-happened metronome rhythm of film biography. Even a promising venture into the Senate hearings on pornography is a minor joke. Jared Harris and Lili Taylor, veterans of Harron's "I Shot Andy Warhol," play colorful characters out of the grindhouse world, but few supporting players get a chance to make an impression. The main draw is Mol's commitment to the role and the film's goofy re-creation of a most peculiar subculture at an unlikely time. --Robert Horton Product DescriptionIn an incandescent performance, Gretchen Mol (The Shape of Things) stars as Bettie Page, who grew up in a conservative religious family in Tennessee and became a photo model sensation in 1950s New York. Bettie?s legendary pin-up photos made her the target of a Senate investigation into pornography, and transformed her into an erotic icon who continues to enthrall fans to this day. Complemented by an ensemble cast of acclaimed actors, such as David Strathairn (Good Night, and Good Luck) and Lili Taylor (High Fidelity), the film brings to vivid life Bettie?s fascinating world.

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