Monday, April 24, 2006
Happy birthday, Shirls. Seventy-two years young and still getting it done, regardless of how kitschy it's gotten or will get. I saw you in The Apartment Saturday night at the AFI Silver Theatre. There you are at left, all of 26 years of age, in the film's crucial moment. Your lover, selfish exec Fred MacMurray, recounts how his kind and considerate lackey (Jack Lemmon) told him off and quit his job. The poor lug was defending my honor, you think. Your eyes flare briefly with joy as you realize that maybe it's not the exec you love. "The nerve!" you utter, playfully playing along while preparing to make one of cinema's great love dashes [a movie mainstay about which I will blog soon]. Who else could've guided us through Billy Wilder's treacherous comedy of manners and suicides? One minute you're a pixie-ish, brazen antidote to Marilyn Monroe -- the next, a heap of satin-voiced vulnerability, ready to end it all. Nerve indeed.