I came across this very striking image of Marisa Tomei today. It's an ad for a series of fitness DVD's.
To me, Maria truly is a beautiful woman. And a fascinating one. Both physically and intellectually. Her beauty is radiant, and there's something so intense going on behind those dazzling eyes.
To be honest, most women who are considered "beautiful" by the media leave me cold. For the most part, they're boring. There is nothing to them but some fortunate genetic inheritance. Most are ultra-conservative, and if they're not, they're just bimbos.
Not so Marisa Tomei. I can't look at the shot above without wanting to get to know her. Like most women, she's probably a hormonal catastrophe (sorry, Marisa!), but even that doesn't lessen my enthusiasm for the special magic she conveys.
The lady's intelligence is borne out in her career choices. She blew me away in Sidney Lumet's Before The Devil Knows You're Dead, an amazing movie with half a dozen dazzling performances. Marisa is not afraid to show her body; that, in itself, communicates a restless passion, and a desire to explore life's twisting avenues.
In Factotum, the Charles Bukowski pic, she nailed the part of Laura, a sexy bourgeios who introduced the career drunk (and writer of massive talent) to another side of the world. She failed to convert him, but she made a heavy impression doing it.
As a film director direct myself, it would be an honor to work with Marisa one day. I'll need to find her a role worthy of her complex talents, of course.
While on the subject of beautiful, fascinating, complex women, I can't ignore Maria Bello, another mighty fine actress who has smoked up the screen in Payback, The Cooler, A History of Violence, and Thank You For Not Smoking, to name a select, excellent few.
Again, I can't look at her without being hopelessly drawn inside. An actor can't work at being fascinating. You are or you aren't. Bello most definitely is.
She's made some excellent career choices, and, like Marisa, has not been afraid to disrobe. Both women have a European attitude to nudity and sexuality, and have expanded their repertoires as a result.
This is a disarming intellect, a woman who is comfortable being a woman, and understands that the best actors take off not just the clothes that cover their bodies, but the finery that fogs their emotions.