Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Cinema Tuesdays {Tootsie}

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1982's Tootsie tells the story of Dustin Hoffman playing a struggling actor named Michael Dorsey. He's actually an excellent actor and everyone, including his respected agent, admires his work. The problem is that he can't hold a job down because he's such a damned perfectionist and no one will hire him because he's just too difficult to work with. He's also almost 40 and hasn't had an acting job in four months.

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His friend Teri Garr has an unsuccessful audition for a role on a soap opera called Southwest General and both out of desperation and in need of raising money to put on his room mate's new play, he decides to audition himself.

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Using his skill of doing his own makeup, Michael becomes Dorothy Michaels, flunks the audition, tells the pompous director to fuck himself and is hired by the female producer.

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The sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot director is played by wonderfully played by Dabney Coleman, who also played a sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot executive in 9 to 5

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What makes this film great, aside from being hilarious and the hijinks that ensue from Michael working in drag and trying to maintain a personal life is that you tend to forget that Dustin Hoffman is playing Dorothy. You forget that this is a man playing Dorothy, he's just that good at it.

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My favourite character is this film is Bill Murray playing Michael's room mate. Bill Murray was a big star at this point, but he's wonderful in this small role and apparently he improvised his lines.

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Dorothy Michaels objects to most of her lines and the way her character is written, so she makes up her own lines and turns the character into a tough, well-rounded woman, which you don't normally see on soap operas. As a result she becomes America's hottest new actress.

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On the other hand, Michael falls for Dorothy's co-star and new best friend Julie, a single mother in an unhealthy relationship with the director. And Julie's widowed father falls for Dorothy.
Hilarity ensues.

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"That is one nutty hospital"

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