Hello, readers and bloggers alike!
Currently listening to: Hero – Pegboard Nerds feat. Elizaveta (and somehow befitting)
So we’re on to Day 9 of the 30 Day Movie Challenge. Today’s post is similar to yesterday’s in the sense that I’ll be choosing my favourite character from a movie. But this time we’re moving on from the men to the women.
Again, before I reveal who I’ve chosen, don’t forget to check out Rhey of Sunshine‘s blog for her choices in this challenge.
For favourite female characters, I found myself incredibly torn on who to choose as my favourite. Also, once more, this was about my favourite female characters and not the ones who I believe are the most iconic. Otherwise I would have easily chosen Ripley from Alien. When it came to male characters, it was difficult for me to choose a favourite ’cause I was want of a male character who I actually really root for – this time round it was difficult for me not to love a lot of female characters.
So, instead of doing a post entirely on one character this time round, I felt like it is necessary for me to share with you three different female characters who I love for very different reasons. And they just so happen to fit into the proverbial set up for a dumb blonde joke: A blonde, a redhead and a brunette. (Although in this post, they all belong to the same plane of intellect.)
So here I go:
1. Penny Lane from Almost Famous
Penny Lane was my spirit animal growing up as a teenager. She had an attitude to life that I aspired towards when I first watched Almost Famous, i.e. carefree, an absolute passion for music, and, yes, that hippie vibe.
The protagonist, William Miller, upon having to do an article on Stillwater for Rolling Stones magazine, meets Penny early on in the film and she introduces herself as a Band Aid.
Penny Lane: We are not Groupies. Groupies sleep with rockstars because they want to be near someone famous. We are here because of the music, we inspire the music. We are Band Aids.
It’s quite obvious that he immediately develops a crush on her. She both absolutely mysterious and absolutely honest. She also has some of the best lines about rock and roll, and has some of the most heartbreaking scenes in the film.
Kate Hudson does a mesmerising performance as Penny. One of my favourite scenes with Penny is where she is dancing in an empty auditorium with a rose stalk to Cat Stevens’ song “The Wind” – sadly all full videos of that has been removed from Youtube. But if you go check out the film itself you’ll see it is in there, along with a heartfelt sing-a-long to Elton John’s Tiny Dancer which basically epitomizes how music can bring everyone together.
I’ll put in the scene where William and Penny Lane first meet so you can fall in love with her at first sight too:
2. Olive Penderghast from Easy A
Olive Penderghast, to some extent, is also my spirit animal. She is the more sarcastic version of me. She is the everyday geeky and totally awkward teenage girl with amazing parents, a great quirky sense of humour and incredible moral values. In Easy A she also gets completely misunderstood and misrepresented by the gossip she self-perpetuates in her high school a la The Scarlet Letter.
What I love about her is her maturity. She is sensible – despite the enormous amount of trouble she ends up digging herself into. She is, by all means, a sensible girl who does her homework and tries to appreciate literature, loves 80s films and has those relatable quirks that teenagers can relate to – like hating a particular song and ending up singing it for an entire weekend.
Olive Penderghast: Whatever happened to chivalry? Does it only exist in 80’s movies? I want John Cusack holding a boombox outside my window. I wanna ride off on a lawnmower with Patrick Dempsey. I want Jake from Sixteen Candles waiting outside the church for me. I want Judd Nelson thrusting his fist into the air because he knows he got me. Just once I want my life to be like an 80’s movie, preferably one with a really awesome musical number for no apparent reason. But no, no, John Hughes did not direct my life.
At the end of the day, despite her constructed image of the coquette, you still root for her to get the guy, have her musical number and to have her happy ending.
And just because I can:
3. Lena Kaligaris from The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants
Okay, here, Lena is not my spirit animal – because she is essentially me. Or the closest I can get to a movie character to be like me. There are a few characters that my friends liken me to: Jamie from A Walk to Remember and Miss Honey from Matilda (and Matilda herself).
But Lena from The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants takes the metaphorical cake. She appears reserved and reticent like me, introspective about life. She also has a hard time breaking out of her shell or giving herself opportunities to be happy. The only thing I envy and wish I shared in common with the actress who plays her, Alexis Bledel, is her porcelain skin and pretty blue eyes.
Lena: [in her letter, after Kostas accuses her of being afraid to love him] He’s right, Car. I am afraid. There’s a part of me that wants to let him in but then I feel myself put this wall up and I don’t understand why. Maybe that’s what strikes me most about Kostas: that despite everything he’s suffered he can still look at life in the most uncomplicated way. I’ve never known that kind of faith. It makes me so sad that people like Kostas and Bridget who have lost everything can still be open to love… while I, who have lost nothing, am not.
Lena is so different from the above characters in the sense that she is insecure about so many things in life and she is more quiet and demur and often times difficult to figure out. But I love her character and I love watching her develop into someone more confident in herself, in learning who she wants to be, i.e. that she wants to paint and to learn how to fall in love. And you can see that develop in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2.
Oh, and thanks to her character, I fell in love with how beautiful Santorini is.
So those are my favourite female characters! I actually love this post ’cause these three are the females I see myself as, and who just portray – not necessarily independent and incredibly empowered women – but women who, through their experiences, are often brave and kind.
Catch this blog once more tomorrow as I decide which movie, for me, is the most underrated.
Till next time!