Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Jessica Harper "Phantom of the Paradise" - The First Time...: November 24, 2010

Phantom of the Paradise - Jessica Harper "Old Souls"
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I'm sure some of you are sensing a trend here. I love music in film. I grew up watching a lot of musicals, both the obvious ones and the not so obvious ones. Music in film has a profound effect on me. Movies may be my first love, but movies made me a music geek. I can freely admit that. So a lot of my favorite movies have a lot to do with music, feature great music, etc. "Phantom of the Paradise", like "Streets of Fire", left a big impression on me as a kid. Both films have a universe and style that they can call all their own, with these bizarre fusions of sound, imagery, genre pastiche, etc. They also both have a lovely singer at the center of the story.

Jessica Harper's turn as Phoenix is both heart-warming and heart-breaking. Watching her go from the gorgeous young hopeful, whose talent and charm Wimslow falls in love with, to the way-too-young-to-be so-used-up chanteuse surrounded by death at film's end is astonishing. Harper deserved to be a star bigger than the cult surrounding her because of this film and the better-knwon "Suspiria".


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