Tag: Amy Heckerling

August 8, 2017 / / Special Pages

Martha Coolidge
~ Valley Girl & Real Genius

Armed with an MFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, Martha Coolidge studied acting before entering the filmmaking world in Los Angeles. Her first feature length film, Not a Pretty Picture (1976), told the semi-autobiographical incident of a date rape. Coolidge found her most commercial success with a variety of comedies in the 80s; most notably, for the Romeo and Juliet inspired Valley Girl (1983), which sparked the career of Nicolas Cage. Coolidge also helped to launch the career of Val Kilmer, in the science fiction comedy Real Genius (1985).

Coolidge was lauded for her 1991 film Rambling Rose, a family drama set during the Great Depression, which earned two Oscar nominations. From 2002-2003, the director held the honor of being the Director Guild of America’s first female president. Coolidge continues to direct films and many episodes of television shows such as Weeds, Psych, Madam Secretary, and Angie Tribeca.

August 5, 2017 / / Main Slate

When, in Fast Times At Ridgemont High (1982), Stacy Hamilton (Jennifer Jason Leigh)–the young, sweet and hopelessly naive freshman who takes way too much bad advice from her friend about how to make boys like her–gets an abortion, this beloved ‘80s classic that helped launch the careers of many young stars of its era ceases to be just any coming-of-age teen comedy. The instantly quotable lines from class stoner Jeff Spicoli (Sean Penn in his first and only likeable role) all slip away. Even the now-iconic pool scene between Linda Barrett (Phoebe Cates) and Brad Hamilton (Judge Reinhold), which helped launch a thousand fantasies and gave a cringe-worthy, fly-on-the-wall view into how the male gaze really operates, becomes just another bit of scenery.