That’s Senator Dunst, to you, buddy!

Monalisa-1sht.jpgIt’s time for another one of low culture‘s trademark specious pop culture comparisons, the better to raise the ire (or, more likely, benumb the yawning indifference) of casual readers and insane commentators alike.
And this one has the added benefit of me not even having seen the movie in question, Mona Lisa Smile. Starring America’s Sweetheart emeritus, Julia Roberts, and a pride of her 20-something replacementsintraining, Smile tells the story of an unconventional, inspirational teacher at a staid, upper-crust school. It’s probably a lot like Dead Poets Society only… prettier.
As a Wellesley alum myself, I felt the need to point out some similarities between the film’s stars and some of the school’s most famous former students. (Seriously, no shit: I spent several summers of my formative years at this camp, playing college student while other—so called “normal”—kids attended soccer camp or simply hung around the house being bored for two months.)
Let’s check out some of the film’s stars and their sorta kinda real world analogs, shall we?
One of them went on to become a famous television anchorwoman, a legend in her field.
Another became one of the best humor writers—male or female—of her generation and then went Hollywood with a string of movies no one admits to liking but everyone can quote. (“I’ll have what she’s having.”)
The last one, well, I’m not so sure what she’s done… something pretty good, I bet.
Yes, these women didn’t all graduate the same years, it’s true. But when you make a movie, you tend to fudge over things like dates and continuity. All of these women, like the characters in the film, attended Wellesley during a time of shifting gender roles in this country and went on to become successful and famous in fields that would’ve been closed to then upon entering college. (And if we go by the old “rate a woman’s success by the man she married” formula, these ladies didn’t do half bad: a two-time Oscar winner and multiple nominee; a great journalist and an Oscar nominee; and, oh, the two-term President of the United States.)
Since Revolution Studios, the film’s production company, has shown an acute interest in prurience for prurience‘s sake, I’m wondering how they’ll manage to work in what Ron Rosenbaum has memorably dubbed “The Great Ivy League Nude Posture Photo Scandal”.
[Confidential to M.W.: There is no special prize for being the first one to respond to this. Might I suggest using those typing fingers for another activity?

11 replies on “That’s Senator Dunst, to you, buddy!”

Omigod, we cannot believe you just dropped Diane Sawyer, Nora Ephron and Yale homoerotic-naked-photo-scandal buzz in the same post. You’ve exceeded yourself. The only way you could have blown our mind more would have been somehow working in “Kinflicks” — which we highly recommend, btw.

Matt, didn’t we watch “Tomcats” together, only to discover that it was not, in fact, prurient at all? Disappointingly non-prurient, as I recall. I suppose it was prurient in the sense of having “no redeeming social importance.”
Speaking of disappointingly non-prurient, “Kinflicks” was one of those titles on my parents’ bookshelves that sounded promisingly like it would be dirty, only to turn out to be lots of boring words (see also “The Prisoner of Sex”).

You dumbass. “Kinflicks” involves:
1) after prom sex 2) naked lesbian sex on roof then splashed by helicopter 3) vibrator electrocuting women in commune sex 4) naked lesbian sex followed by lesbian’s HEAD BEING CUT OFF ON SNOWCAT 5) Dirty pool boy sex.
And it’s still GREAT LITERATURE.
I hope this spikes poor Lisa Alther (LIE-zuh AL-ter)’s Amazon sales. It’s the only good book she ever wrote, but NO ONE EVER NEEDS TO READ ANOTHER BOOK.

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