-- From “Lame!”, Jessica Zafra's review of the new Fame
Didn't see the movie, so I can't agree or disagree. But how perfectly said: [F]amous people were famous for doing something. They could break your heart with their singing, or defy gravity when they danced, or sum up the human experience with a line reading. True enough, some famous people immediately came to mind with those lines.
1. Luther Vandross, A House Is Not a Home. Gorgeous, sensuous voice and the kind of sheer poetic ardency that could have you weeping in heartbreak or ecstasy or an improbable combination of both--whatever, you're simply moved.
2. Defy gravity, eh? Who else but the greatest dancer of the last century, Rudolf Nureyev, whose jaw-dropping physicality onstage redefined ballet forever? Here, from an electrifying moment in Le Corsaire:
3. And matchless line readings--a wicked, wicked entry: Glenn Close in Dangerous Liaisons, in that scene where she explains how she invented herself and became a “virtuoso of deceit.” The lines themselves--all elegant fire and savage wit (by the playwright Christopher Hampton)--are worth savoring before finding out how Close transforms them into one of the greatest monologues in the movies:
When I came out into society I was 15. I already knew then that the role I was condemned to, namely to keep quiet and do what I was told, gave me the perfect opportunity to listen and observe. Not to what people told me, which naturally was of no interest to me, but to whatever it was they were trying to hide. I practiced detachment. I learned how to look cheerful while under the table I stuck a fork onto the back of my hand. I became a virtuoso of deceit. It wasn't pleasure I was after, it was knowledge. I consulted the strictest moralists to learn how to appear, philosophers to find out what to think, and novelists to see what I could get away with, and in the end I distilled everything to one wonderfully simple principle: win or die.