Tag Archives: Michelle Pfeiffer’s Birthday

It’s all too Easy … to Fall for Pfeiffer

Michelle Pfeiffer, the honey-blonde paragon of Hollywood glamour, celebrates her birthday tomorrow. A star for the ages, I like watching Michelle in all her costumed glory, standing on a pier in the sunset or singing atop a piano. But I love her best when she’s tripping over a child’s toy or tiptoeing through a puddle. The great one is at her most charming when she’s playing the fool.The Fabulous Baker Boys excepted, my favourite Michelle Pfeiffer pictures are the comedies. I love her in Jonathan Demme’s riotous screwball Married to the Mob. I’m also rather fond of the breathless One Fine Day. Both of these films playing to Michelle’s ability to marry slapstick with sophistication.At times, Pfeiffer only has to use a nod of the head or a raised eyebrow to convey her feelings. At others, she cuts loose and becomes a purely physical performer, as good in the moment as the screwball queens of the past.The finest example of Pfeiffer’s physical comedy occurs midway through One Fine Day. While preparing for a presentation, Michelle’s feet get tangled in the strap of her bag, she loses her balance and then proceeds to flatten the model she’s carrying. Her limbs are contorted and her hair is in her face, and yet somehow Michelle still looked more beautiful and graceful than any of her rivals.Back then Pfeiffer was held up as the quintessential leading lady, a perfect specimen, an ideal to aspire to, but Michelle was never afraid to walk into a door, look like a klutz and let us in on the joke. It was her misfortune that Meg Ryan, a little pert, a little prissy, and very blonde, would corner the market in girl-next-doorish-fake-orgasmic roles throughout the 90s.Born in the wrong era? A screwball queen without a crown? If only Michelle could’ve travelled back through time, to the early 1930s to be blessed by the Lubitsch touch. Audiences would have gone wild for her.

Happy Birthday Michelle!



Filed under Retrospective