Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Over the girl

Last week we spoke about that elusive good lesbian movie, so this week I thought we’d take a trip back in the way-back machine to a little year I like to call 1997. Bill Clinton was still in office. No one had ever heard of Monica Lewinsky. No one outside of Texas had heard of George W. Bush. The war in Iraq was a distant memory. This whole internet thing was just starting to seem awesome. And a little movie called “All Over Me” was released.

There is nothing really flashy about “All Over Me,” and that’s a good thing. It’s just the story of a teenage girl, Claude (Alison Folland), growing up in New York’s Hell’s Kitchen and trying to navigate the big city and her bigger emotions for her best friend, Ellen (Tara Subkoff). I haven’t seen it in years (note to self: order the DVD immediately), but I can still remember how real it felt the first time I watched it. Everything about it – the grit, the hunger, the devotion, the confusion – it was all so honest. And so raw. Most movies about teenagers today delight in making them precocious one-liner machines. They’re too cool for whatever school they’re stuck in, and we know it. But “All Over Me” wasn’t interested in the normal trappings of Hollywood a coming-of-age stories, or being cool. It was just interested in being real.

One scene in particular sticks with me, all these years later. When Claude is helping Ellen in the restaurant bathroom and she says to her, “Everyone knows I’m your dog.” My God, haven’t we all been there. For young women, gay and straight, the female friendships we have as teenagers are some of the most intense and most complicated of our lives. It’s a fascinating dynamic that rarely gets touched on in most movies beyond the sassy best friend character. But what fertile cinematic ground awaits for those who dig a little deeper.

I’d always hoped for more great things from the filmmakers, sisters Alex and Sylvia Sichel, would go on to do many more great things. The last major credit for them on IMDB is the Chloe Sevigny and Michelle Williams “1972” segment in “If These Walls Could Talk 2.” That, by the way, was my favorite segment from that film, one that again showcased the sisters skill at subtle, yet powerful realism. Also, damn, it was hot.

And so were scenes in “All Over Me.” Why hello, adorable young, pink-haired Leisha Hailey. Hello very much.

All that and it also stars Rickie Vasquez Wilson Cruz. Yep, definitely buying this DVD. Definitely.

24 comments:

ERRRRRRRN said...

I own it on DVD and VHS, oh and I have the soundtrack...obsessed much?

Anonymous said...

I own this movie on DVD as well and every now and again I'll break it out and rewatch it... it's a heartbreaking film with sweetness too (hello adorable Leisha Hailey).

I'd go a bit further back and pick another film 'Times Square' and recommend that to everyone as well. While not quite going there with the lesbianism it's implied and the two leads make the film all the more compelling.

bgcartist said...

I also own this DVD and have always thought it was one of the best acted and well written lesbian films as well.

Anonymous said...

Come On Dorothy, you know damn well that "good"lesbian movies are elusive to you, because you know "zip" about what makes a movie good. See you are too busy ripping into good movies like Room in Rome, because that movie explores lesbianism and you my dear are all about the dick nowadays, hyping heterosexual sex as some sort of progressive feminist/lesbian paradigm.

Well I saw "All Over Me" years ago and I could barely get through it, this brings another point into greater context.

Young white teens, yes that's who you pander to with a smattering of older less tolerant emotionally immature lesbian. Oohhh what an exclusive audience to have MFAO.

Anonymous said...

great post about "all over me" i've seen it like three or four times

Carmen SanDiego said...

I'm going to find a way to watch All Over Me immediately but I wanted to let you know that, for some reason, all the links on the right hand column of the blog went to the bottom of the last post over here. Maybe is just my Firefox that just updated....

Carmen SanDiego said...

Just read 2nd Anonymous comment. Wow, I seem to be losing my reading and comprehension skills because in the 3years I have been coming here religiously every morning I have NEVER seen DS hyping dicks or hetero-sex. Insane.

Jamie said...

Saw 'All Over Me' a million years ago. Remember it well, mostly because of Alice, um Leisha... For another excellent movie in the same vein check out 'Show Me Love' (1998)
Fucking Åmål (original title), its Swedish.

Anonymous said...

Who's Dick chap then?

WolfsGotYourTongue said...

dear Anonymous,
Outright attacks on a public forum aimed at someone you've never met (or is this a personal vendetta??) tells more about you then about Ms. Snarker.
Strong words are easily used by the cowardly when they are anonymous.
Please consider your motivations.
Sincerely,
Giana
aka
WolfsGotYourTongue

Heather Anne Hogan said...

I have to disagree Anonymous #2 up there.

I don’t know why she’s complaining. I, for one, am so pleased with all the dicks you’ve been posting lately, Dorothy Snarker. And by "lately" I mean "for the last four years." Am I right, you guys? Day in and day out, even when you’re on vacation, you blog about dicks. All the dicks. All the young, white dicks. Every time I click on this blog, I can just count on getting a face full of wang. Why, I was telling my friends the other day, "You want to read a blog all about peckers? You should check out Dorothy Surrenders!"

I actually think you should rename this blog Captain Winky.

Captain Dick Winky.

Captain Dick Winky McCock-a-saurus Rex.

I’m going to go read an actual lesbian blog now. Where the writer talks about strong, sexy women with an eye toward queer ladies. Like maybe some gender-bending photos, hot girls in tank tops, poignant tributes, fan-pleasing recaps, socio-poltitical commentary, thoughtful reviews. Stuff like that.

But I’ll be back here tomorrow, don’t you worry. I can’t live without my daily dose of nut cannon.

In the meantime, I’m going to heed Anonymous #2’s call to be a little more emotionally mature. I think I’ll start by trolling around the Internet spewing nonsensical hate without using my real name.

sparksnsmoke said...

I adore that movie in all it's flayed bare, quavering insecurity. Years ago I placed a personal ad titled "Claude seeks Lucy". Never got her, but had a nice time dreaming.

Ava said...

*slow clap* for Heather Hogan. Don't you just love anonymous trolls in the morning? (Or afternoon, or evening, depending on your time zone.)

All Over Me was one of the first lesbian movies I saw, during my "must watch every lesbian movie ever made" phase circa 1998. I haven't seen it in a long time but I love little pink-haired Leisha Hailey in it.

Anne said...

Anonymous #2, you know the famous saying 'fighting over the internet is like racing in the special olympics. Even if you win, you're still retarded.'?
You don't need to fight. Consider yourself a winner. Now, will you please move on to a blog that talks about real lesbians and let me, and many other people, enjoy the dicks posted here? As a lesbian, I enjoy those so much. Must be why I read this every day.
Now, if you don't mind, I'm off to bed (01.42 here), and I'll be sure to dream of dicks. Oh and I'll watch this movie. It's summerbream, after all.

Sleep tight, and for #2, have fun getting angry at someone you don't even know. You sure made my day.

lmsantiago said...

Aww, I've seen this movie in bits and pieces. I need to buy it and watch it all the way through. Thanks for the reminder!

P. S. I do believe Anon #2 was "officially Rizzolied" by the Awesome Heather Hogan.

Anonymous said...

I wish I had seen this movie when it came out. I graduated high school in 1997. It would have saved me 10 years of wondering what was wrong with me. I dressed like this. Every day. I was Claude.

C. said...

Thank goodness for Heather Hogan and the last 30 minutes of All Over Me. I remember finding this gem at the video store in North Hollywood. It had a lot of wrenching BFF stuff in the beginning that was a bit of slog— BUT which may have made the happy ending even more sweet.

vrgriffith said...

Anonymous #2 is still wallowing around in residual bitterness from The Kid's Are Alright period. Chill dude-ette! Cyberhatlng is not cool.

Have the movie, but thought the soundtrack was better. Really liked Foxfire w/ AJ.

Wish I had seen Time Square!

Bent said...

You mentioned the 70's segment from If These Walls Could Talk 2, and it caused a little flutter inside. That first kiss when they arrive at her house on the motorcycle. Michelle's character positively swooned with desire, so damn hot! Then when they finally get together...those girls were definitely into their characters. Lit it up! Very believable.

Daniel said...

Only good thing about this idiotic comment? Ms. Hogan's wonderful reply. I'm still laughing.

But, seriously: Don't feed the trolls. They grow when you feed them (except for their dicks, they get smaller).

Happy Weekend everyone, I'll be be back on monday for more awesome pictures and discussions of dicks. Because that's what I'm here for.

Anonymous said...

I think a best of Lesbian film list (past and present) is in order, Ms. Snarker. I need something to watch!

FeltHat said...

Wow I haven't laughed that hard in a while - Hogan's a Hero!(epic reply!I'm still laughing)

I'll stand up & be counted too - been reading here since it began - & have recomended it to many friends. Obviously its all the dick i keep coming back for - just can't get enough.

Do hope you can ignore the silly troll - but seriously celebrate that in all this time this is the first troll attack - thats gotta be somekind of a record!

Keep snarking Dorothy & keep being a hero Hogan! & I'll keep coming back - for the dick obviously.

Captain Dick Winky McCock-a-saurus Rex. - yep still laughing about it all

Anonymous said...

I bought it on faith. I heard Leisha Hailey was in this movie. I had to have it. Bought it online cause my movie store didn't carry it. Best thing I ever did.

-Heather, Ottawa

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