In the wake of the remake of one of my favourite films, Sparkle, I found it only proper to restart my list of the divine ladies of film by paying homage to one of the most talented, ferocious, and truly one of the most beautiful actresses I’ve ever seen.
Lonette McKee is a woman who’s always demanded respect. From her days as a musical artist to her work as an uncompromising actress, she’s managed to make the entertainment industry take notice of her fiery presence. Born July 25, 1954, McKee got her start as something of a musical prodigy in her hometown of Detroit. She began her career as a singer and composer, writing music and lyrics for some highly recognized documentaries and films, including a documentary about Manhattan African Burial Ground, as well as the theme song for film Quadroon — not to mention writing and producing five studio albums.
Though I didn’t know anything of her prestigious music endeavours, I’ve been an avid fan of hers since I was about 13. It was at that age that my father introduced me to a film that would further propel my love of music and history.
In the space of time it takes for one to realise that her career is on the verge of crashing at the first peak, it’s possible that many actresses and actors will have already professionally bitten the dust. It’s no surprise that those who’ve fallen prey to the pitfalls of the ever-fickle Hollywood parade have been child stars; however, those with the unfiltered passion to trudge through the mud have the ability to reinvent themselves and produce work that’s both memorable and challenging.
Such is the case with Christina Ricci.
Ricci’s rise to the top, no surprise, came in the form of her reprised role as Wednesday Addams in the Blockbuster-turned-cult classic film series, The Addams Family. It’s her precocious nature as a child actress and her ability to handle the black comedy of her character with a straight face that shocked and damn near frightened people.
At the age of 11, she delivered such lines as “Are those Girl Scout cookies made from real Girl Scouts?” without breaking a sweat or denigrating to the feats of giggling that other child stars can’t seem to suppress. She had a maturity that was astonishing and carried that bravado with her into adulthood.
On the long list of gorgeous Latinas and Hispanicas, there are a select few that have actually caught my attention as some of the most incredible presences to ever grace the screen. Paramount in most minds is the unfailing sexiness of Selma Hayek. She is, no doubt, one of the most unrelenting forces in Hollywood as far as sex appeal, grace, and fire; however, another woman has taken her spotlight in my eyes and has managed to create some of the most incredible art in the town of Tinsel and Tine.
Mrs. Penélope Cruz can do no wrong in my eyes. She may not be the most “traditionally beautiful”; however, her sexuality has a spice and reach that even the lovely Hayek can’t reach. blow There’s something mature, intellectual, and pronounced about the way that Cruz carries herself that sends shockwaves through my system.