I've known about the Dee F. story for some time actually, heard it through the grapevine. And what a story! Can you imagine, you're in a homeless shelter, on crack laying on a stretcher and from out of nowhere LIZ TAYLOR looks down at you and comments on your teeth? How surreal! Hon, if that's not enough to scare you straight nothing is.
Though there are other actresses I love, I've always felt Elizabeth Taylor was the Ultimate Movie Star from the standpoint that she embodies all that Hollywood represents: the glamour, the beauty, and the artistry, but also the excess, the drug abuse & rehabs, the waste and the multiple marriages. Liz can be a fiere thespian at times (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Suddenly Last Summer) and also be totally bad too. She was a product of the old Hollywood studio system but lived through its downfall and aftermath.
Other Liz fave flicks:
THE VIPs - the first film Burton & Taylor made post-Cleopatra, but I think it was actually released before Cleopatra because Cleo took so long to edit. Taylor WORKS the early 60s glamour in Givenchy traveling suits and elaborate upsweep hairdos. Part of my inspiration for starting the Mile High Club, it's a Grand Hotel kind of deal where all the action takes place in a London airport with an all-star cast of characters who must get out of the country for their own reasons. Taylor plays the wife of billionaire Burton who is running away with aging gigolo Louis Jourdan.
REFLECTIONS IN A GOLDEN EYE - based on the eerie Carson McCullers novel about lust at an isolated Southern army base. Taylor, in Pucci prints and fall wigs, plays the wife of a deeply closeted homosexual Captain played by - - Marlon Brando! Brando is obsessed with a young studly Private who rides a horse totally nude. The Private in turn is obsessed with Taylor and sneaks into her bedroom at night to watch her sleep. Next door live Brian Keith (who's having an affair with Taylor) and his sickly wife, Julie Harris and their flaming queen Filipino houseboy. Shocking ending and just wierd throughout.
SUDDENLY LAST SUMMER - of course. Also directed by Mankiewicz and features ultra-fierce Katherine Hepburn and post-accident Monty Clift who barely got through production because he was so strung out on drugs and alcohol (Hollywood legend has it he only got the part through Liz's intervention). Based on the Tennessee Williams play and scripted by Williams and Gore Vidal, the dialogue crackles and it works as real drama while being campy at the same time. Liz gives a great performance and is RAVISHING in her swimsuit scenes.
X, Y AND ZEE - in which Liz plays the raving, out-of-control Machiavellian battle ax wife of Michael Caine, who's doing it with Susannah York on the side. Watch for the scene where Liz confronts York.