As soon as I saw the brilliant ‘Women I’d Quite Like To Be’ playlists by @wandapops and @georgianafleur I knew I wanted to do one myself, but I had a problem – although there are a lot of women in music I like, I never really wanted to BE any of them. All of my idols, heroines and girl crushes were on the silver screen. Then I had a lightbulb moment. ‘Women I’d Quite Like To Be…at the movies’!
(Sorry there’s only a YouTube Version, Spotify was limiting my choices too much.)
1. Audrey Hepburn – Moon River, Breakfast at Tiffanys
This was an easy choice. My favourite actress in one of my favourite films. I love the original version of Moon River. Beautifully simple, providing a rare glimpse of Holly’s almost childlike vulnerability.
2. The Ronettes – Be My Baby, Dirty Dancing
Of COURSE Dirty Dancing is in here! I really envied Baby. She had brains and beauty, and who didn’t want to have just one dance with Patrick Swayze – especially after seeing *that* deleted scene?! This song has always been a favourite and doesn’t get played quite as often as Time Of My Life.
3. Chuck Berry – You Never Can Tell, Pulp Fiction
Mrs Mia Wallace was just cool. Really cool*. The sharp bob. The cigarette pants. The five dollar shake. The twist. The nails. OMG the nails! She is the reason I always have a bottle of Chanel Rouge Noir in my fridge (it allegedly stops it going gloopy). *Why, yes. I *am* glossing over the not-very-cool OD scene here to fit my definition of cool!
4. The Pixies – Wave of Mutilation (UK Surf), Pump Up The Volume
Oh Nora. The “eat me, beat me” lady. How I loved thee. I tried to dress like her (thank you The Dark Arches and The Corn Exchange!), I worked in the school library like her. Sadly there were no Christian Slater types at my school to complete the fantasy! This is the best version of Wave of Mutilation in my opinion.
5. Harry Belafonte – Jump In The Line, Beetlejuice
The eagle eyed among you will spot that Winona Ryder is the only actress to make two appearances. I have a special place in my heart for her. I loved her. LOVED her. A scary amount. I just REALLY wanted to BE her, or stroke her hair or just watch her sleep or something…ahem. Sorry! Lydia Deets is one of my favourite of her characters (“my whole life is a dark room”) and I defy any of you not to chair dance as soon as this song starts!
6. Cool Rider – Michelle Pfeiffer, Grease 2
I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve seen this film. When we were kids, every single time my best friend stayed over we had to watch this! Please don’t bother boring on at me how Grease is a much better film, yada yada. I DON’T CARE. This one is funnier and cheesier and has Reproduction – a song about SEX, and (Love Will) Turn Back The Hands Of Time – THE CORNIEST SONG EVER WRITTEN. And then there’s Cool Rider. Stephanie Zinone’s wishlist, which I’m convinced is the main reason my BFF has a thing for men on bikes!
7. Barbara Streisand – The Way We Were, The Way We Were
I love Katie. She’s clever and brilliant and ultimately chooses not to compromise her beliefs for a man. More of this please Hollywood!
8. Jennifer Hudson – All Dressed In Love, Sex & the City
The women of Sex & the City, another choice I feel I need to defend! I know opinion is divided on whether the show was anti-feminist or just about consumerism blah blah blah. It was the first show I ever saw where men were only ever supporting characters. Where women had sex with no shame. Where women discussed abortion with no shame. Where women could choose to be child-free. With no shame. Do you see where I’m going here?! This was an important program, so you’re damn straight I’m embracing a technicality and including it just because there’s a film version. Just please don’t mention the sequel!
9. The Knack – My Sharona, Reality Bites
Winona’s second appearance. I almost chose Heathers, which is admittedly a better film, but this is the only film that inspired me to go to the hairdressers clutching the soundtrack and say “make me look like her”! She had a lovely pixie crop. Sadly she has fine hair and I have VERY thick hair. I left looking like the fifth member of the Beatles. Not a good look for a fifteen-year old girl!
10. Carly Simon – Let The River Run, Working Girl
Tess McGill. She has “a head for business and a bod for sin” you know! But she really does have a head for business, and she gets the account, the man AND the job (in ascending order of importance!). The triumphant final scene isn’t Harrison Ford sending her off to work with a packed lunch. It’s her discovery that she has a PROPER job with her own office and secretary and everything! *high five* Go Tess! And go Carly, with a triumphant gospel chorus to sing us out for the finale…