Sunday, October 12, 2008

The return of Debra

"Debra Winger, approx 1980"

I'm guessing you never pegged me for a worshipper of movie actresses. Of course not. You know that,
as a self-respecting cynic, I know perfectly well they're only mortals. (Although , let's face it, watching the Oscars on TV one could conceivably be convinced they're more like demi-godesses.) And even if I were to accept that at certain moments on screen they could be thought of as , OK, let's say semi-divine, I still know that their art is not them. Not exactly. At performance's end, when costume & makeup come off, actresses may be brilliant or dull, marvelous or boring, but, bottom line: they're just ordinary women (admittedly, remarkably good-looking). Only a pathetic fool would worship them.

As a matter of principle,
I'm 100% convinced that this is also true of screen actress Debra Winger. But -- oh bottomless, sobbing chasm of delicious despair -- I'm hopelessly smitten. I have been for decades. Her movies, mostly from the 80s (she dropped out of Hollywood in 1995), are watchable but not great (Urban Cowboy, Terms of Endearment, An Officer and a Gentleman, Betrayed ). On the other hand Debra ("please, may I call you Debra?") is bewitching, mesmerizing, a princess, a courtesan, a vestal virgin, the girl I love -- oh God! -- she's that ole debbil moon, the tao that cannot be told... I confess! Every time she appears on screen I get a jolt -- it's spiritual, sexual, my chakras light & go ding ding ding like a pinball machine. I'm in heaven.

Fantasy. Irrational. Mildly insane. OK, I have a crush, right? I'm carrying a torch. That's all it is. A matter of deep unknowable physical history & hormones. There are no higher beings -- no angels, for example. No past lives in which I was the mighty king to her magnificent queen. Any educated person with a modicum of informed skepticism knows those are tall tales. In the end she's just another attractive woman. Of course...

"Debra Winger in 'Rachel Getting Married' ", 2008


Debra, I adore you...
more helplessly than ever.

Explanatory footnote: This all came up because of a movie, Rachel Getting Married that I saw yesterday. It's directed by the great mostly unsung Jonathan Demme, stars Anne Hathaway, Bill Irwin & yes, Debra Winger (she plays Hathaway's mother). I won't bore you with the plot, just say it's emotionally complex & has the guts to present this complexity without tying up all the loose ends into a nice satisfying (unreal) ending. Worth seeing for sure.


Anonymous said...

For me, it's Javier Bardem. grrrrrr

Anonymous said...

hheheheh, you're cute when you're smitten!

Anonymous said...

Don't forget Shadowlands.

Tim Connor said...

Chris, That one I haven't seen. Time to get going again w Netflix (colder weather)

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