- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 18, 2003

What a feeling

“‘It’s hot!’ is the explanation Jennifer Lopez gave for why she decided to pay homage to the 1983 movie ‘Flashdance.’ ‘This was a specific iconic movie of our generation,’ said the 32-year-old Lopez. For clarification she added, ‘It still holds up and it’s hot.’

“Lopez could not describe the film’s appeal beyond the word ‘hot’ — that handy euphemism for unexamined excitement — partly because ‘Flashdance’ did away with articulation. … That a generation’s esthetic taste could have been formed by a film as trifling as ‘Flashdance’ is an alarming realization. It gives unexpected significance to Lopez’s newest music video ‘I’m Glad’ — which faithfully restages many of Flashdance’s most famous sequences. Lopez stars, showing more flesh than ever even in leotards. … The video compresses the essence of ‘Flashdance’ into about three minutes. … Coincidentally, this reduction tells almost everything we need to know about the state movies are in.

“‘Flashdance’ should go down in history as the single film that destroyed modern cinema. … ‘Flashdance’ influenced more than marketing; it changed movie content into non-content. … It was ‘hot’ because it looked easy; it looked easy because it was a lie.”

Armond White, writing on “Fleshdance,” in the June 18 issue of New York Press

Rock genius

“[Rock producer Phil] Spector claimed to be creating ‘little symphonies for the kids’: He was. He set out to make millions and millions of dollars and music that was good and important enough to last forever: He did. And he wanted to find love — true, true love: Ah, well … two out of three ain’t bad, even for a genius. Not a ‘mad’ genius and not a ‘misunderstood’ genius: genius. Wizard. Artist. Just trust the tale told in mono — back then, a whole world did. …

“Listen to the echo, to the quiet spaces framing the pumping, massing beat and chords within a translucent tissue of desire — the pure love-burst chamber of a young heart torn and twisted. …

“Harvey Phillip Spector, the asthmatic, nebbishy kid whose papa killed himself when Phil was only 8, who wrote and produced his first No. 1 song at 17, who subverted every aspect of the music biz … who coaxed, battered, and willed sheer sonic brilliance from unknowns, Ramones, and half the Beatles, then vanished into myth.”

Scott Raab, writing on “Be My, Be My Baby,” in the July issue of Esquire

Keep paying, guys

“Men and women are virtually interchangeable these days. Women are in the pulpits of churches and the cockpits of Air Force fighters. …

“Women want more authority and control over men. They don’t want to open doors, but instead they want to gain a little monetary jurisdiction. … [A]ccording to some study, nine out of 10 women expect a man to hold the door open for them, but only 22 percent are happy for the man to pay for dinner. …

“I can’t tell you how many men I know who think that this behavior is not only acceptable to them, but they consider the fiscal end result to be ‘cool.’ And they tell me that it’s a sign that they are a ‘liberating’ type of guy. I see it as a sign of being the ultimate cheapo. …

“OK guys, so modern left-feminism has made a laughingstock out of some of you, but that’s no excuse. …

“In the book ‘Brain Sex’ by Anne Moir and David Jessel, the authors say that ‘holding a door open or carrying in the groceries is not mere social convention; it is the masculine for “I care for you.”’ Bravo! Then care for me, please. Despite Gloria Steinem, every fish needs a bicycle to carry out the masculine act of buying her dinner.

Karen De Coster, writing on “Fishes and Bicycles: Who’s Paying for Dinner,” Tuesday in www.lewrockwell.com

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