Maria Schneider was one of the most intoxicating women I’ve ever seen on film in 1975’s The Passenger. The film starred Jack Nicholson while he was in his zone; The Passenger was released one year after Chinatown and the same year as One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest but was overlooked due to the overwhelming praise and commercial success as those films. Luckily, Nicholson bought the rights to the movie and re-released an extended cut on DVD a few years ago where I happened to discover it at TLA Video (RIP) on a whim.
I had never seen Maria Schneider before. She made her bones in Last Tango in Paris opposite Marlon Brando when she was nineteen years old, but The Passenger opened my eyes to this French facemelter. Her eyes and inviting looks did most of the talking to Nicholson. Her curly hair and young, brazen attitude made you want to walk over hot coals just to get her a lemonade. Nicholson played a guy who exercised an out clause on his normal identity, opting to skate around Europe posing as a dude photographer and Schneider played the broad who dangled the carrot. Suddenly Nicholson was stealing cars and running around Italian churches without a care. It’s amazing how much you don’t give a good damn when a pretty Parisian takes a shine to you.
Anyway, Schneider’s career derailed due to drug use and a nervous breakdown in the 70’s. She made no other films of substance until passing away at 58 years old from a longtime illness. She peaked at 21 years old, going toe to toe with arguably the best two actors of the 20th century during the last great era of excellent filmmaking. And like that, she was gone. It was like falling in love with a girl during summer camp who then moved to Anchorage, Alaska. You always wondered what she was up to now, if she still smelled the same, if she ever settled down, what you might say if you ever bumped into her at the super market. But you never did.
Rest in Peace Maria Schneider. You can read more about her career at the AV Club. And I highly suggest watching The Passenger.
I first came across Alison Brie as Trudy Campbell on Mad Men back in 2007. Hidden underneath Jackie O blouses and box hats as an early 60’s WASPy housewife, I never picked up on her saucy girl-next-door sexiness until this year’s breakthrough comedy Community on NBC. As Annie, the hyper over-underachiever, I’ve been forced to change my tune, specifically since the episode where she had to make out with Joel McHale to win a philosophy debate on human nature. Man is bad, yes?
Though she’s playing an 18 year old student on Community, Alison Brie is actually my age, so I won’t feel guilty for peeking in the cradle. She appears to be the hot girl in Lit class who fits Ludacris’ requirements for a meaningful relationship (don’t make me quote “Yeah!”). I second the line from Troy on last night’s episode: she gets the invitation to go Red Shoes Diaries on us anytime she feels like it.
This bird played “Trish aka ‘The Hot One’ ” who ended up winning the award for Miss Pawnee at the Pawnee Beauty Pagent on “Parks and Recreation” last night.
Fun fact about April Marie Eden: she also played Deborah, the dead office supply model that Michael fell in love with on “The Office”last year.
NBC should keep homegirl on retainer.
Essential viewing for Jennifer Tilly:
1. Bound — The Illmatic of lesbian hiest flicks. Still the best directing by The Wachowski Brothers (The Matrix triology)
2. Bride of Chucky — The Ready to Die of horror flick cleavage.
3. The Getaway — It’s 1994. Kim Basinger is still hot. She’s starring in a movie with her then-husband Alec Baldwin, who was an uber-star. Michael Madsen, newly christened cult figured badass via Reservoir Dogs, is the main antagonist. And the sexiest, sultriest, most eye-catching performance was from Jennifer Tilly as Fran Carvey, meek spouse of a nerdy vetrenarian.