endeavoring to catch up, as difficult as it is.
As a side note, we are actually one whole movie down now, as our copy of "Noroi" is in Japanese and the subtitles didn't work. So, admittedly, I was kind of lost there so I gave up. We have our team of crack researchers delving into the matter as we speak, so we will keep you posted.
We also did a little switching and moved "Devil" behind today's feature, because it sounds like an interesting movie and I wanted to watch it with my sons, who also have discriminating tastes in film ... just like their old man!
So let's get right to this extremely funny movie that I am anxious to talk about, "The Witches of Eastwick!"
The Witches of Eastwick (1987): Directed by George Miller. Written by Michael Cristopher (Based on "The Witches of Eastwick," by John Updike). Distributed by Warner Bros.
Starring: Jack Nicholson, Cher, Michelle Pfeiffer, Susan Sarandon, Veronica Cartwright and Richard Jenkins.
|Susan Sarandon wants to fuck us all ...|
The Hotness: Before you open your festering gob to shout "THIS ISN'T A HORROR MOVIE" at me around your mouthful of Spicy Chili Doritos, don't. The point was to discuss films about the Devil, and this might be the first film on the list where he actually makes an appearance. But more on that later.
This is an excellent movie, bolstered by some fine performances by some of the greatest starts of 80s cinema. And while it isn't what you would consider traditional "horror" fare, the legendary John Updike knows what is truly horrific and focuses instead on seemingly mundane things like being trapped in an unsatisfying routine with no escape. Or being the focus of gossip in a tiny one-horse-town where you can't wipe your ass without being judged on the quality of your feces. Or of hiding away your passion and talent in exchange for cold comfort and a paycheck.
Such are the lives of our three witches, and it is those weaknesses that Jack Nicholson (in the role he was born to play) exploits as he seduces and worms his way into these women's lives. His seduction is both subtle and gross, depending on the woman and the circumstances, but in each instance it is perfectly crafted to suit their mindset. And it works. Nicholson's Daryl van Horn (an anagram of "A Horny Devil") winds up having sex with all three woman, moving them into his opulent mansion and conducting ongoing affairs with them until they all wind up pregnant with his demon spawn.
|Yum, saucy Jack ...|
The other performances are just as quality: Cher is at her golden best, looking beautiful and embodying Alexandra fully, and Susan Sarandon and Michelle Pfeiffer are equally at the top of their game, as is the always solid Richard Jenkins. The other standout performance comes from Veronica Cartwright as the prim and proper Felicia, who goes slightly mad after bone marrow works its way into her brain. Cartwright leaves all self-preservation at the door as Felicia descends into madness - she slobbers as Jenkins spoons oatmeal into her mouth and she lasciviously runs her hands through her legs as she rants about the "turpitude" that has invaded their little Rhode Island town. She never, ever disappoints.
|Nicholson on woman in society: Who needs 'em?!|
|That ... is not pea soup.|
Side Notes: In a movie packed with great actors, there is one scene that has always held a little place in my heart. Alexandra, a sculptress, walks into the shop where she sells her "booby dolls" when the owner, Mrs. Biddle, tells her that a mysterious stranger has just purchased them all. The actress - the late Helen Lloyd Breed - then delivers a soliloquy about meeting and being charmed by van Horn, and it is full of subtlety and nuance, right down to a quick lick of her fingertip before saying "it's right on the tip of my tongue!" She's amazing and she just charms my pants right off.