In which we explore the filmic concerns of a given theme, and find new and novel ways of putting together yet another Internet-based list of movies. The wrinkle here, is our fifth pick will actually serve to prove as the counter argument, the best representation of the direct opposite of our theme.
1. Amélie (2001)
Director: Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Gist: A sweetly innocent young woman (Audrey Tautou) moves to central Paris and takes on a life of selflessness and generosity in order to find love.
The Hair: A ’20s-style bob, with fringe bangs.
The Entanglement (Conflict): All her giving ends up taking away from Amélie’s ability to give to herself. Only when she learns to actively want things for herself does the possibility of love become reality.
The Conditioner (Legacy): A timeless ‘do that still evokes the roaring, carefree spirit of the era that made it famous, it suggests a woman who enjoys a good time on the dance floor and doesn’t mind knocking a hair or two out of place in the process of throwing down a highball.
2. Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)
Director: Blake Edwards
Gist: Holly Golightly (Audrey Hepburn), a young gal-about-town with a quirky nature becomes fascinating and alluring to her neighbor, Paul (George Peppard), a struggling writer.
The Hair: A classic and well-kept chignon, of course.
The Entanglement (Conflict): On the one hand, Holly is a vivacious party girl, but alone with Paul, she appears to be something else altogether, and in either case the smitten Paul can’t figure her out.
The Conditioner (Legacy): Hepburn’s timeless, impeccable hair suggests both Holly’s unique perspective and her cosmopolitan roots.
3. House Party (1990)
Director: Reginald Hudlin
Gist: Kid (Christopher Reid) gets invited to a massive high school party at the house of his friend Play (Christopher Martin), but many obstacles to his going present themselves, including his angry father (Robin Harris), and a group of school thugs who want to whomp on him.
The Hair: One of the more infamous looks of the early ’90s: the celebrated high top fade. No one had a better HTF than Kid, ever.
The Entanglement (Conflict): All Kid wants to do is have fun and bust some complicated combination of moves with his boy Play. But his pops, the cops, and a few bullies conspire to keep him from getting there.
The Conditioner (Legacy): It’s a statement ‘do, alright, suggesting either Kid’s brand of slightly goofy fun, or a man who means serious basketball business. In the NBA, it never quite goes out of style.
4. Johnny Suede (1991)
Director: Tom DiCillo
Gist: A young musician (played by a very young Brad Pitt), obsessed with Ricky Nelson, attempts to become a rock idol while navigating the difficult waters of romance.
The Hair: A full, gravity defying pompadour.
The Entanglement (Conflict): Johnny lusts for a pair of black suede shoes in order to fully complete his look. Alas, they remain the one essential item out of his grasp.
The Conditioner (Legacy): A difficult hairstyle to emulate, this hair essentially says, “I have nothing else to do all day other than keep my pomp fresh.”
And the antithesis:
5. Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979)
Director: Robert Wise
Gist: An alien object of enormous destructive power is detected on the fringes of the Galaxy, and the newly refurbished USS Enterprise, reunited with her old captain (William Shatner), is sent to investigate the phenomenon and intercede.
The Hair(less): The stunningly beautiful Lieutenant Ilia (Persis Khambatta) sports an utterly clean shaven dome.
The Entanglement (Conflict): Ilia’s consciousness eventually gets taken over by the mysterious force, which turns out to be an old Earth probe somehow made sentient by a supremely advanced race, much to the disappointment of her soul mate, Captain Decker (Stephen Collins).