In honour of Dennis Hopper, I watched True Romance again the other day. Despite supposedly being a Tarantino fanboy, I hadn’t actually seen it since the VHS days, so it was interesting to hear the retrospective commentaries, and finally see the alternate ending on the DVD copy. This was the first screenplay that QT ever finished, written at the age of 27 when he was, by his own admission, still very inexperienced with women… and it’s hard to shake the impression that the whole movie is, as Brad Pitt so astutely puts it, “a young man’s wet dream”. QT freely admits that it is his most “autobiographical” script, so one can only assume that, on some level, ‘Alabama’ (as portrayed by Patricia Arquette) was his ultimate fantasy woman at the time, just as Clarence (Christian Slater) was an idealised version of himself.
Now, there’s no question that she’s a damn fine looking woman, but I just can’t warm to Alabama myself… I mean, a ”call girl” who hangs out with drug-dealing murderers, however sweet she may be, is still going to set alarm bells ringing in my overly-cautious brain. I find myself feeling a little weird (unmanly?) for saying this, but I’d rather not have to kill a pimp and sell a suitcase full of cocaine, just to impress a potential life-partner. My dream woman would be more like ‘Fiona’ (Mabel Aitken) from Coming Soon, or ‘Charlotte’ from Sex and the City… someone I could have a glass of wine and a giggle with as we wander around an art gallery. Someone who could organise my paperwork for me. Someone who knew how to shop, and could put a cute outfit together. Clearly my fantasies are not the stuff of Tony Scott-style, adrenaline-fuelled action flicks! I guess there probably is a market for rom-coms about scruffy men getting made over by glamorous women… especially if they happen to be played by Pitt, who appears here in a scene-stealing cameo as Floyd. How does he manage to look so good, even when he’s playing a sofa-planted stoner? Damn him!