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Friday, July 29, 2005

How do you like your celebrities?

Had an amusing conversation with a friend recently. Her new weekend ritual is to sit in Barnes and Noble and read “Star” and the “Enquirer”. I rather liked this idea-buying into pop culture without buying it-and I asked who her favorite celebrities were. She favors Renee Zellweger and Cameron Diaz, who annoy me; I prefer actresses such as Catherine Zeta-Jones and Nicole Kidman. She reflected that she likes celebrities who seem down-to-earth and warm, and finds Nicole Kidman to be too icy. And I was like, “Yes! Glamour! Aloofness! That's what I want from stars!! I long for the old days of Hollywood.”

I should write an Internet quiz about this.

5 Comments:

Blogger Ann said...

If forced to choose, I guess I'd say I like Scarlett Johansson and Angelina Jolie and Jessica Simpson--as celebrities, you understand, not actors. I don't really know what that means.

2:32 PM  
Blogger kStyle said...

Jessica Simpson amuses me. Angelina Jolie--eh. Scarlett Johansson---very pretty, but lacks je nais se quoi.

3:15 PM  
Blogger Eric said...

Scarlett is aces in my book. If I met her, I'd expect her to kind of blow me off, and I respect that in a movie star.

In general I prefer aloofness in my movie stars: the whole idea of them is that they aren't regular people who can be my friends, right? I'm right there with you on the "days of old Hollywood" thing, kStyle: I wouldn't expect to be pals with Garbo or Cary Grant, and I don't expect to be friends with Nicole Kidman, who's got this thing down pat.

(Sad, then, that her ex-husband is blowing his own once sort-of-mysterious persona in favor of eagerness for us all to Understand him.)

The point is we go to the movies in part because movie stars are supposed to know something about life that we don't. The glamour is part of that, the idea that they're occupying a bit of a different world than hoi polloi. If they're Just Like Us, then why bother?

p.s. I dissent on Zeta-Jones, though, who seems to me to be faking it. She doesn't have it in her bones, the way Kidman does. And she's a mediocre actress.

9:54 AM  
Blogger Eric said...

p.p.s. One must distinguish, though, between those movie stars like Kidman, John Wayne, etc., who became movie stars first and good actors second; and those who became movie stars because they were good actors. (In the latter category one would find such folks as Henry Fonda, James Stewart, Dustin Hoffman, Susan Sarandon, Tom Hanks...)

These stars don't have to be mysterious in the way that the others do, as what we require of them (talent) and what they give us (truth), exempts them from the obligation to seem otherworldly. If anything we prize them for a certain candor we sense in who they are onscreen.

11:40 AM  
Blogger kStyle said...

Eric, I agree with your elucidation.

9:06 AM  

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