Friday, November 18, 2011

Elle S'Appelait Françoise....Her Name Was Francoise

Since I began my Icon series with Catherine Deneuve, it seems fitting to immediately follow with her beautiful sister, Françoise.  At the time of her death, Françoise Dorleac was actually a better known actress in France and had just begin establishing her rightful place in films that were being seen and discussed in other countries.  Françoise played aloof to Catherine's cool....those sisters: even now they make you want to watch them. Ms. Dorleac was tragically killed in a car accident in 1967 and to this day her sister Catherine rarely talks about it...she did however co-auther a beautifully written, very poignant book entitled Elle S'Appelait Françoise....Her Name Was Francoise which I am very proud to own...it is in French but thankfully I can read and translate most of it.



The two sisters appeared in two film together: "Les Demoiselles de Rochefort" aka "The Young Girls of Rochefort" and "Les portes claquent" aka "The Door Slams".... 
Films to consider....."Cul De Sac", "Les Demoiselles de Rochefort"
I think I will leave you here...with photos and a sense of sadness for the loss of her potential, possibility and ethereal beauty.....Elle S'Appelait Françoise.








Françoise and Catherine



Icons: The Series....

I love old movies, but then you probably know that.  My love of celluloid began young and has been constant throughout my life.  This is the beginning of a new series of posts I am going to try and do weekly (in between school work, house work and work, work, work!) in which I give my thoughts about who I consider to be movie icons, fashion icons, political icons, those people who give the world a slightly better flavor and provide we folk with the opportunity to focus on, look at or think about these movers and shakers who play significant roles in informing, influencing and impacting our cultures....

With that said.....our first Icon is an actress who is hands-down my favorite French actress (and there are many fine ones), a gorgeous blonde known as Catherine Deneuve who was born Catherine Fabienne Dorleac.  Born into a family of highly regarded actors (her older sister, Francoise Dorleac, was just coming into her own as a actress when a auto accident took her life in 1967).  Catherine chose her mother's maiden name, Deneuve, as her professional name because, as she was once stated: "I wanted my sister to be the only actress of her generation named Dorleac."  Below, that is a young, pre-blonde Catherine gazing down at her beloved older sister, Francoise, who is reading her lines....


Catherine, left, with Francoise



Compelling, controversial, compassionate and cool and stunningly beautiful....I give you, Ms. Catherine Deneuve.  Films to consider: Belle Du Jour, Indochine, Potiche, Mississippi Mermaid, The Hunger and many others.  Remember, Madame Catherine Dorleac is very French, very European, a very progressive woman, actress, activist, mother, human being.  These things reflect in the films of Catherine Deneuve.  Prepare to be a little shocked, perhaps a little discombobulated.  You won't be able to take your eyes off of her...nor will you want to.  Enjoy!





Francoise, left, with her younger sister Catherine


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

I love Fellini!

Tonight I am watching (probably for the 900th time) 8 1/2 which I have always adored.  I never get tired of watching it, the cinematography and visuals are still beautiful.  The thing I  love about Fellini films is this: the plot is always based around the central character who is clearly experiencing inner turmoil, or doubt, perhaps it is religious guilt.  Marcello Mastroianni and Anouk Aimee were amazing in the film and the ensemble cast give the movie a whimsical, human depth.


I love foreign film, I LOVE LOVE LOVE Fellini!

And last but not least...make yourself beautiful!

Have a glass of Champagne, it makes all women beautiful (please refer to my blog about "I'm drinking stars")! Ladies, make yourselves beautiful today and everyday!

I want to age like Catherine Deneuve!!!!!

She is amazingly stunning!  I want to be an old lady like Deneuve someday!

I Love Amy Winehouse and I am not afraid to admit it!

Amy Winehouse....what a sad story! I love her music...I played Back to Black the other day and I have to say it sounded poignant, funny, funky, beautiful and sad.  If you listen to her first album, "Frank," what you hear is a lovely, talented young jazzy singer in the making.  Those of us who were/are fans of her music (not her lifestyle per se) will undoubtedly wonder what any forthcoming albums may have sounded like...oh yes, 46 year old Grrrrls like me never apologize for liking things outside of age-related convention.  If Grace Slick of the Jefferson Airplane died, I would be writing this about her instead of Amy Winehouse.  Given that Gracie was born in 1939, I could be writing a similar blog about her in the near future.  I sincerely hope not! Have a great day!

Monday, August 15, 2011

A Thing of Beauty.....James Dean

He died 10 years before I was born but from a very early age I knew who James Dean was...my Mom kept him alive as she discussed the personal and societal impacts of his films.  Every generation has it's "bad boy," the guy your parents warned you about and told you to stay away from.  James Dean was the "Rebel Without A Cause," he met and exceeded Edna Ferber's Jet-Texas character of Jet Rink in the 1950's classic film, Giant, which also starred Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson.  Besides "Rebel" and "Giant", Dean also starred in "East of Eden", but it was during production of "Giant" that Dean was killed in a car accident in California.  He made three films, only three, but it is those three films that form the basis for the legend who still lives and influences our culture today, some 56 years after his untimely demise behind the wheel of his beloved Porsche Spyder.  Three films:  in 2011, it is unthinkable to call one's self a star or actor or celebrity after having only three films on their resume...not so for Jimmy...James Dean was here for a short time, he blazed across the big screen; he influenced fashion and culture, he unknowingly (and perhaps) unwittingly came to represent the Rebel, that individual who dares to chart their own path, to forge an identity based upon their own personal reality instead of the conjured reality of others.  He was amazing, he amazes us still.......

Sunday, May 15, 2011

I Am Drinking Stars!

“The wine of Champagne is the only one that makes women beautiful after drinking.” - Madame de Pompadour, mistress to Louis XV.