The news this morning that Elizabeth Taylor has died at age 79 was a bit of a shock. Yes we all knew she was in ill health, but she seemed invincible – someone who had endured through literally decades of one health challenge after another and survived.
The passing of this legend – this icon of the golden era of Hollywood – will spawn a million retrospects over the next few days.
But I wanted to open up a dialogue about what her life meant to you. Did one of her films, one of her performances, speak to you, or influence you in a way that was unique or memorable? If so please leave a comment below.
And if you need to jog your memory, go here for more about this classic and classy Hollywood icon.
Here are just a few favorites and recommendations from her movie career. All are available at your local Connecticut Blockbuster video store. And many are also available for rental on Redbox.
Jane Eyre – this 1943 version of the Bronte classic stars Orson Welles as Rochester, but Taylor plays an early pivotal role in the story of Jane’s childhood in the poorhouse.
National Velvet – Taylor’s first starring role with Mickey Rooney
Giant – with Rock Hudson and James Dean. If you haven’t seen this film, rent it immediately! It is long but worth your time. Invite friends over and make it Texas-themed party.
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof – Taylor is fury herself in this adaptation of Tennessee William’s play of the same name. Added bonus: Paul Newman as her co-star.
Butterfield 8 – her Oscar win.
Cleopatra – the movie that ate Hollywood. See it for its excesses, her beauty, the endless cast of extras, and the notoriety of her public affair with Richard Burton. Taylor was the Angelina Jolie of her time and this film is a technicolor record of that fact.
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf? – for those going through a bitter divorce, stay away from this one. All others, jump in. She and Burton are amazingly raw and real in this powerful film.
Other film reviews you may enjoy:
Never Say Never – Justin Bieber, his rise to teen stardom and his dedicated fans. An interesting documentary and concert flick, fun and entertaining.
The King’s Speech– outstanding performances by Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush and Helena Bonham-Carter make this unusual but powerful film well worth seeing. I predicted that it had a high probability to sweep the Oscars, with Firth a shoe-in for Best Actor. It was gratifying to see him win it.
Black Swan– Natalie Portman won the Golden Globe and Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in this film and she deserved it.
Winter’s Bone – an astonishing performance by Jennifer Lawrence, for which she has received an Academy award nomination. I look forward to more from this incredible young woman.
Tangled– great Disney flick, full of fun and action; good for the whole family.
Keeping your Sanity this Holiday Season: DVDs for holiday viewing
Love & Other Drugs – best for older teens and adults. Rated R for a reason. Anne Hathaway and Jake Gyllenhaal are naked for most of the film.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – a real treat for HP fans
Taking Chance – an unforgettable performance by Kevin Bacon now available for rental
Hereafter– good performance by Matt Damon
Let Me In– a different kind of vampire tale
A Solitary Man– one of Michael Douglas’ best roles
The Social Network– see what everyone is talking about
Letter to Juliet– a good romance with strong performances
The Back-up Plan– best for JLo fans
City Island– quirky and fun