Friday, May 29, 2015
Susan Sarandon Mama Dramas
THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW. THE HUNGER. BULL DURHAM. THELMA & LOUISE. Since the 1970s, Susan Sarandon with her big bright eyes has slammed across some smart and lively work in films that became high points in baby boomer pop culture.
Last year, I saw Sarandon give one juicy performance as a stage mother in another movie star biopic. It only played at a few movie theaters and it's now available on DVD. Two terrific performances graced an indie film with a bad title. The Last of Robin Hood sounds like an action/adventure or perhaps even a comedy. It was neither. It is a very respectful, revealing and often heartbreaking look at the last love and years of the Hollywood actor who famously starred in 1938's The Adventures of Robin Hood for the Warner Brothers studio -- Errol Flynn.
The mama hungered for Hollywood fame and money more than her daughter did. Today, reality TV has made achieving celebrity status a microwave experience. TV programming is bloated with instant celebs, folks who want face time on a red carpet. Young Beverly (played by Dakota Fanning) comes to care for Errol Flynn. And he needs someone to care for him. He's still famous but his studio star power, his movie star good looks and his good health have faded. He meets with Stanley Kubrick and is disappointed that he can't get the male lead in a film he seemed perfect for -- Lolita. But his real-life courtroom woes with almost legal females made hiring him risky business. Errol Flynn went charmingly to seed because he couldn't curb the party animal in him. The popular yet under-rated actor was a notorious ladies' man and a heavy drinker.