Dead Girl (1996)

  |  Comedy

Dead Girl (1996) Poster

Ari Rose, an unsuccessful actor, falls for a beautiful woman named Helen-Catherine but strangles her when she rejects him. Ari then takes the dead woman home, has sex with her corpse, and comes to believe that she is still alive.


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27 February 2000 | vanguard-studio
| Morbid "comedy" as Parody of the Hollywood Machine
I liked it. Going into the experience expecting an utter horror show was actually a plus, I think. Whatever it was, I found it utterly engaging. Sort of like the car wreck theory of entertainment that has catapulted such questionable talent as Howard Stern and Jerry Springer into superstardom. It was so shocking you couldn't wait to see what it threw at you next.

I really liked the "dead girl as script" analogy. That seemed to really work for me. When you're involved in developing a script, it's very much like a love hate relationship with a mate. One day, you feel it's the best thing you've ever done. The next day, you hurl it in the trash (like when he abandons her at the diner). When it finally gets bought, the director and actors dissect it, cut it, rearrange it, essentially rape it (like the scene with the director in the trailer). Okay, so some of the commentary on the superficiality of Hollywood was heavy-handed I admit.

Which brings me to Val's character. Who or what was he supposed to represent? His only interest in Ari seemed to be his connection with Hollywood and his potential to become a big star. He's very concerned with Ari's relationship with the bigwig agent. He is most often disinterested with only a few emotional outbursts which appear random, unnerving. He's not the media, not the public... the Hollywood establishment maybe? Does he represent a place where you are defined by who you know...? A place where you are measured by the box office receipts of your last picture? A place where style is valued over substance? I don't know. Am I grasping at straws here?

Another puzzle is the Amanda Plummer character. Who was she supposed to represent? She was a busy little bee buzzing around Ari's head, desperate for attention and affection. Maybe she embodies all actors and actresses both the wannabes and the realized? Love me! LOVE ME!

Tell me, am I making any sense here? Have you even read this far? Well, thank you if you have. I appreciate everyone's help on this one. The fascination for me lies in Val's decision to take on this role. Why? What was his motivation? He must have had the inside scoop on all the real meanings behind the script. If the BIG GUY liked it, it must be good. Right?

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