“Myra Breckinridge” is a hard-to-find classic “bad” movie. What makes it exceptional stems from its cast, the novel it’s based on and the extent that duality weaves through this roughshod masterpiece. Starring Raquel Welch – but supported by a cast including Mae West as Leticia Van Allen, Farrah Fawcett as a blonde ditz and Michael Sterns, billed simply as “Stud” – this film is rather poorly directed by Michael Sarne, but masterfully saved by the quality of its source, Gore Vidal’s eponymous novel. “Myra” goes on about the merits of the old days of Hollywood where everything was over the top and glamorous.The movie opens with Myron Breckinridge going under the knife for a sex change operation to become Myra. Considered more than a bit racy at its premiere in 1970 – it was actually rated X on first release – this is probably one of the films Fox is more ashamed of. It completely bucked the “morals and ethics” of the time. The movie explores the duality of American society at the time. In the aftermath of the 1960s turmoil the United States was still stuck in the tug-of-war between traditionalist Eisenhower-era conservative forces and the younger liberal movement. “Myra” is laced with people who are torn between their internal push and pull about it. The judge smokes a post-anti-communist-rant joint after everyone leaves his office and Myra rapes the jock with a strap-on in the middle of the movie after she’s had her member snipped off.Even better, West’s part of Van Allen ends up being disturbing, yet enjoyable. She makes the movie extra-objectionable by making comments like “You’re 6’7″? Let’s forget the 6 and explore the 7.” This is coming from the mouth of a woman in her mid-70s who is wearing dentures. If you can avoid being put off by the gay jokes, sarcasm, breasts and random tattoos then this film is a fantastic treat and at least is creative enough to have a lecherous old woman.Not having any such compunction, I found the film delightful in the way that only a bad movie with some great acting and constant insanity can please. “Myra Breckinridge” is showing at the Dryden Theatre at the George Eastman House and no one under the age of 18 will be admitted – since the movie received an X rating in 1970. The movie starts at 8 p.m. and the cost of entry is $6 for general admission, $5 with a student ID and $4 with a Dryden Membership. To complement this movie – and the rest of the “Loathsome Films” series – the George Eastman House and Pride Network are sponsoring a lecture by Associate Professor Harry M. Benshoff of the University of North Texas. The lecture is in Lander Auditorium in Hutchinson Hall at 6 p.m. on Thursday, March 25. Titled “Beyond the Valley of the Classical Hollywood Cinema – Rethinking the Loathsome Films of 1970,” the lecture will be on a string of films from the period that pushed the boundaries of taste, style and experimentation. If you have more than a passing interest in film, then on March 20 you should see the filmmaker Charles Burnett, who will be at the Dryden Theatre at the George Eastman House to screen his movie “To Sleep with Anger” and answer questions at its conclusion. The event is sponsored by the Frederick Douglass Institute for African and African-American Studies and the Film and Media Studies Program. Admission to this event is free for everyone.Paris can be reached attparis@campustimes.org.



Time unfortunately still a circle

Ever since the invention of the wheel, humanity’s been blessed with one terrible curse: the realization that all things are, in fact, cyclical.

An open letter to all members of any university community

I strongly oppose the proposed divestment resolution. This resolution is nothing more than another ugly manifestation of antisemitism at the University.

UR Softball continues dominance with sweeps of Alfred University and Ithaca College

The Yellowjackets swept Alfred University on the road Thursday, winning both games by a score of 5–4.