Jul 21, 2010


Tootsie (1982)

Directed by Sydney Pollack. Starring Dustin Hoffman, Jessica Lange, Teri Garr, Bill Murray.

Long story short: Micheal Dorsey is a struggling unemployed actor, who doesn't seem to get hired, because of his difficult nature and bad reputation. Desperate, he transforms into Dorothy Michaels. Maybe he will get lucky as she. 

tootsie - noun. Definition: woman. Synonymes: babe, dame, dish, doll, girl, honey.
It's generally recognised that men dressed as woman are very funny. Chaplin knew it (I remember seeing such short film), Billy "Some Like It Hot" Wilder knew it, Robin Williams knew it, and Finland's very own Marja Tyrni knows it. I just mentioned Charlie Chaplin and Marja Tyrni in the same sentence. Yikes. Sorry. Anyway. Dustin Hoffman certainly knows it too.

I agree - it is, nearly without exceptions, funny when a man dresses up as a female. It is kind of cheap and easy comedy, though, but Tootsie was a big hit back in the 80s, so I gave it a try. And yeah, the movie was pretty funny.

I like Dustin Hoffman. He's terrific in The Graduate and Rain Man, and wonderfully sympathetic in more recent films like Finding Neverland and Meet the Fockers. And generally, he just seems very cool. And again, he's great Micheal/Dorothy. He actually does a very good female impersonation! So it's not as ridiculous as in, for example, Some Like It Hot, when everyone totally buys that he's just a bit peculiar woman.

Bill Murray's character steals pretty much every scene he's in. He plays Michael's roommate Jeff, a straight-faced and sarcastic playwright. Jessica Lange was good - sure, she won an Oscar for the role. (It's odd that a comedy like this was nominated for about a million Oscars.) But I liked Teri Garr's neurotic Sandy much more.

The funniest scenes in the film obviously had to do with the cross-dressing. There were some very nice gags and absurd situations they'd managed to create around the scenario. It was funny how Michael began to understand the womanly problems and see the world from their point of view. At the same time the film made some pretty good points about the subject.

Um... Well. Here it's once again made clear that I should write about a movie straight after watching it, as I usually do. My mind is blank. Oh well. Tootsie didn't rouse that many thoughts in me. But it was a fine comedy (with a blah ending). And Dustin Hoffman rocks. I feel like watching Rain Man.

"What do you mean you don't have anything to wear?"
"She has seen me in all of these!"
"She hasn't seen you in that white dress."
"You cannot wear white to a casual dinner. It's too dressy."
"What about this thing?"
"No. I don't have the right shoes for it, I don't like the way the horizontal lines make me look to hippy, and it cuts me across the bust."
"... I think we're getting into a weird area here." 

PS. INCEPTION TOMORROW. TRYING NOT TO BE TOO EXCITED. (I'm telling myself it'll be the worst movie ever, so that maybe I won't be horrifically disappointed, if it's not the best one.)


Mikaela said...

As you said, it's usually always funny when a man dresses up as a woman. Tootsie is in the top 2 in that category, only one movie does this better, Some like it hot ;O) Hoffman is really good in this flick ;O)

Eeva said...

I agree, no one does it like Some like it hot! Though I think Dustin Hoffman appears more like a woman than Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis did, they are an inch funnier. :D