Friday, March 06, 2009

Better Off Red

Bruce Springsteen sings about them -- and sometimes marries them. Some of the most famous ones --Lucille Ball and Rita Hayworth -- were fake ones. We often connote fiery passion with the color, but also sometimes wackiness or ill-temper. But on these ladies, in these roles, red was simply hot.

Red Bull
Susan Sarandon is what I consider a true dame, and her resume boasts a couple of memorable, juicy roles. She's the Louise portion of Thelma &, and the redheaded Witch in Eastwick. But I will always love her most as the sexy, Whitman quoting, baseball loving, muse-minx Annie Savoy in Bull Durham.

This movie is so wonderful that I don't even have to bother trying to sum it up. Same with Susan's Annie. Just mention the role, and that's enough. But I couldn't imagine Annie as a blonde or even a brunette. She's got that fierce intelligence with a lovely loony streak and enough passion to fill a stadium. She's so unique and different that you almost expect she'd be scoffed or mocked in her little southern town, but she's so outrageously vibrant that instead, she's a star. Also, Sarandon has a lovely first name.

Rose Red -- Damsel in Distress
Kate Winslet has now finally won her Oscar. YAY for her! She is a great actress who's tackled many a complex role. She had already done Shakespeare and Austen by the time 1997's Titanic came around. This is one of those movies that people either love, or they love to hate. I admit it, I'm an idiot who loves it. It's not at all the highbrow thing that some people try to pretend it is. But it is an excellent costume drama, sweet romance, and Cameron action picture, all in one.

Kate plays young Rose, chafing against her mother's expectations and her rotten fiance's overbearing 'tude. With her dangerous red tresses, we know she's not going to play it safe and succumb to her fate easily -- either by sinking her life by marrying a cad or by just sinking with the ship. She's a randy broad, posing nude for Leo and later steaming up the backseat of a car with him before they start running for their life through the doomed vessel.

Scarlet Woman -- Hooker with a Heart of Gold
Julia Roberts had already notched a couple of notable roles on her belt, but she rode her coltish charm and wild locks to superstardom in 1990's indefatigable Pretty Woman. When Richard Gere finally saw her without the blonde wig and she sheepishly pointed to her hair and admitted, "Red," he simply answered, "Better." No shit.

Cinderella-Pygmalion project Vivian Ward is the hooker, but it's also her innocence that helps redeem corporate raider Richard Gere in Gary Marshall's blockbuster comedy. Though it's from 1990, this movie captures the very essence of the '80s and had enough vivacious charm to keep audiences coming back to Julia for nearly two decades.

Ruby in the Rough?
And in the "one to grow on" department, she's not a superstar yet, but I sure did adore wild & comic redhead Isla Fisher in Wedding Crashers. She's even gotten her first leading role since that flick, and she seems to have plenty of promise as an engaging actress. So hopefully, for her, the best is yet to come.


critical mick said...

The beautiful pics of Julie and Isla more than counterbalance the Barbara Steisand below.

You've made my day with this tasty tribute, Susan - redheadilicious!


SusanD said...

Oh, like an arrow through the heart, the dig at Babs, Mick! But I'm glad you dig the redheads, too!