Sunday, November 7, 2010


Female empowerment took center stage last night, as The Cinefamily at The Silent Movie Theatre presented another delicious double feature - The Legend of Billie Jean and Supergirl! What's that? It can't possibly get any better? It can: Helen Slater appeared in person for a Q&A!

If you've never seen The Legend of Billie Jean...well, mostly I just feel sorry for you. This cinematic gem from 1985 tells the story of Billie Jean Davy (Slater), who ends up on the wrong side of the law and leading the charge of a full-scale youth revolution in Corpus Christi, TX.

What's she fighting for? The $608 it will cost to repair her kid brother (Christian Slater)'s motor scooter, trashed by a creepy rapist's Hunky McNoBrains of a bully son. FAIR IS FAIR! Also along for the ride is Yeardley Smith, instantly audibly recognizable as the voice of Lisa on The Simpsons, and Peter Coyote when he was still super handsome. About 45% of the film is set to Pat Benatar's "Invincible", which unsurprisingly was released as the movie's theme song.

After TLoBJ, Helen Slater herself took the floor for a brief Q&A with Cinefamily's Hadrian, along with the film's surly writer Lawrence Konner. Some things I learned:
  • Helen and Christian actually aren't brother and sister, it's just a weird coincidence.
  • Faye Dunaway was "always very aware and particular of how she was being lit at any given moment".
  • When asked what he wished the The Legend of Billie Jean could have been without studio interference, Konner simply said, "Better."

Supergirl never goes to New York in her "first" adventure. The movie takes place in Illinois, and was filmed in England.

After a brief intermission - where Ms. Slater was gracious enough to meet fans such as myself in the back courtyard - it was time for the "secret" 2nd film, which of course turned out to be 1984's Supergirl. This movie not only features Faye Dunaway as an evil sorceress bent on world domination, but also Peter O'Toole as a Kryptonian lush named Zaltar.

Slater of course plays the titular role, but is sometimes called Kara and sometimes called Linda Lee. Sometimes she has brown hair. It would appear that Supergirl received generous amounts of financial funding from Popeye's fried chicken.

"I can make the sky rain coconuts with pinpoint accuracy, but I still can't control men's minds!"

Faye ultimately does her best to steal the show. Her scenes are all very dramatic, almost as if she seemed determined to turn this into her greatest role ever. Every time she summoned the 'Power of Shadow' I could feel my soul shrink in terror! Also definitely worth mentioning? There is a screen credit for an actress playing 'Selena's Astral Image'.

Overall it was an amazing night, thanks once again to the gang at The Cinefamily. Last night I volunteered with them for the first time, and it certainly won't be my last. Their programming is top drawer, and you can't beat the atmosphere, people or truly one-of-a-kind events. Check out their next 'Pajama Party' screening on November 27th - a double feature of Labyrinth and Return to Oz! I wish I could be there, but I'll be on the East coast for my high school reunion. Sigh. Go, have a blast, and report back to me!


Bananas Foster said...

you lack of mentioning Brenda Vaccarro as Ned Beatty & Mia Farrow as a skeletal Marlon Brando is forgiven because of your use of the phrase Kryptonian Lush.

Marc Edward Heuck said...

And to be even nerdier, the Pat Benatar song is "Invincible," not "Innocent," though since she says that word just as much it could just as easily have been the title.

Joe said...

Holy DURR, I can't believe I flubbed that. Many thanks! You win a Supergirl DVD. Shoot me an e-mail if you're interested!