Time: the indefinite continued progress of existence and events in the past, present, and future regarded as a whole, but of course, we all knew that! This week's "Then & Now" hottie came as a suggestion from one of our fellow shcmoes, philalva77. I wasn't exactly too familiar with the lady in question, but I didn't mind learning more about her, as I consider it one of the perks of writing this column. I love being introduced to hotties who've stuck out to a group of movie fans, no matter how big or small. This actress, however, maintained a steady career in front of the camera, and stretched her hotness streak out for well over a decade. In other words, plenty of you shmoes aught to be familiar with her work. So, let's get down to business! Let's take a look back at a woman who's 100% business, and 200% pleasure, Rebecca DeMornay!
Rebecca Jane Pearch was her given name when she was born on August 9, 1959 in Santa Rosa, California. Her parents divorced when she was 2-years-old, and 3 years later she was given her stepfather's surname, De Mornay. She sort of pin-balled around the globe when she was growing up. Somehow she ended up in England, and attended Summerhill School in Leiston, Sufflolk, but she graduated high school in St. Johann, near Kitzbühel, Austria. Then she was trained to be an actress at the Lee Strasberg Institute in New York. Needless to say, Rebecca really got around. The same could be said, in a different way, about the character she played in her first breakout role in film…
Most of us are aware of the film RISKY BUSINESS, and the impact it made in 1983, so why is it such a rare film to run into on television? Perhaps because of the film's subject matter. Along with De Mornay, Tom Cruise also makes his big breakout debut as Joel Goodson, a horny high school student with a 3.14 GPA who fears his elaberate sexual fantasies may hold him back from getting into a good college. That is until his parents leave him home alone for a couple weeks, and his reputation is slowly demolished by a call girl he can't seem to get rid of. Joel is pushed into this mess by his sloppy friend Miles, played by Curtis Armstrong (or "Booger" from REVENGE OF THE NERDS), when he convinces Joel to ask himself, "what the f*ck?", a question which still slays the demons of our existence to this day.
After getting set up with an African American tranny by accident, Joel Goodson ("good son"... get it?) decides to try again, and calls Lana (played by De Mornay). The sex scenes in this movie are hard to distinguish from the dream sequences, as they both include unrealistic elements, such as wind blowing the door open, leaves brushing into the house, and lights slowly flickering on and off. But it turns out they do bump uglies, and when the morning comes, Joel is hit the shocking reality that paying for sex is expensive. When he leaves the house to fish $300 out of his savings bond, Lana decides to bail, taking his mother's priceless decorative egg-thingy with her.
Once Joel tracks her down to retrieve his mother's precious jewel, we're introduced to Lana's abusive, gun-toting manager Guido (played by The Situation….. just kidding, Joe Pantoliano). Lana jumps in the car with Joel, and they speed away from her crazy boss, introducing us to the first high-adreniline Tom Cruise car-chase sequence in cinema. Joel decides to let her stay at his place one more night, which is a big mistake, because over the next 24 hours, she and another call girl friend start inviting Joel's buddies over. Obviously, Joel isn't cool with this, even when the call girls offer him "his cut". But then Lana accidentally shifts his father's sports car into neutral, sending it into the Mississippi River, and ipso facto, Joel's parent's place becomes a fully-operating whorehouse. Because he needs the money. What else can you do, right?
I mean, "what the f*ck", right?!?
RISKY BUSINESS also makes Tom Cruise look like he was once a very normal human being, filled with awkwardness and self-doubt like the rest of us. After all, Cruise didn't get involved with those L. Ron Hubbard clones until his TOP GUN days. BUSINESS definitely has that classic '80's teen movie vibe, that makes us all feel connected to the characters. Who hasn't slid around the living room in nothing but sunglasses, socks and tighty-whities, dancing to Bob Seger's "Old Time Rock and Roll" when they were home alone? Right? Why are you guys looking at me like that?
As for Rebecca De Mornay, she played her part near-perfect and looked beautiful the whole way through. Since the movie was a hit, it only makes sense that she was being scoped out by directors all across the board. Her next big feature was RUNAWAY TRAIN (1985), the thriller that introduced the likes of Danny Trejo and Tommy "Tiny" Lister. It's about (brace yourselves) a runway train carrying several escaped convicts and a female train worker (De Mornay) as it plunges through the snowy desolate of Alaska. Sounds pretty badass, right? Well, it is (kinda). Many consider it to be one of the most underrated movies of the '80's. New York Times journalist Janet Maslin credited the film for its "crude energy and bravado". Hey, it's got De Mornay, Danny Trejo and a pretty crazy-awesome poster, so it has to be good.
Throughout the '80's era, Rebecca showcased her singing voice as well, as Debby Plamer in THE SLUGGER'S WIFE (1985), as Beauty in BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (1987), and she even displayed her guitar-playing skills in AND GOD CREATED WOMAN (1988). She also starred with Mary Gross in the comedy FEDS, about two women training to become FBI agents, while simultaneously dealing sexism from the male agents and trainees. Although, the ironic tagline on the poster, "Sleep Tight, America. These Women Carry Guns." is probably the most sexist thing about that movie.
At the start of the '90's, DeMornay was hotter than ever, and against all odds, she decided to get even hotter (literally) by starring in BACKDRAFT (1991). She played the wife of one of the firefighters, played by… one of the Baldwins (does it matter?). BACKDRAFT was a heavily marketed summer action-flick, and even had its own attraction in Universal Studios, so naturally, it was a box office smash. However, a side-character in a blockbuster wasn't fulfilling enough for Rebecca, so the next year, she surprised audiences with her hidden talent of being creepy, in THE HAND THAT ROCKS THE CRADLE (1992).
THE HAND THAT ROCKS THE CRADLE was a popular suspense-thriller that still holds up to this day. Rebecca plays Peyton Flanders (now don't you diddly-iddly go there!), a woman coping with the loss of her baby and husband by trying to steal other women's babies and husbands. She gets hired as a nanny by the Bartels, a family of four, and she uses her twisted, conniving tricks to turn Mrs. Bartel's whole family against her. It's actually quite sickening to watch, but Rebecca does an excellent job playing a subtle psycho. The role earned her the MTV Movie Award for Best Villain, which perhaps used to mean something back then. This led to her starring in more high-tensity suspense-thrillers throughout the '90's, including GUILTY AS SIN and NEVER TALK TO STRANGERS with Antonio Banderas, which featured a bizarre sex scene reminiscent of RISKY BUSINESS.
Around the mid-nineties, Rebecca began shortening her last name to DeMornay, even though she was already very well-known. She also appeared THE THREE MUSKETEERS (1993), THE RIGHT TEMPTATION (2000) and IDENTITY (2003), but there was nothing in the first decade of the new millennium that took her to "shining star" status once again. So where the hell is Rebecca now? One might guess she got trapped in a Häagen-Dazs factory, and has spent the last several years forcing gallons of deliciousness down into her defenseless stomach, and now her blood-type in Rocky Road. One would be wrong, though, for here is what Rebecca DeMornay looks like today…
Well, call me the reverse version of a "cougar" (a muskrat?), but I'd still easily put down $300 for a one-night-stand with 53-year-old Lana. I would still get down to some frisky business with her. More like Rebecca DeHornay if you ask me. This really shouldn't come as much of a surprise to fans of DeMornay. As ridiculously busy as she was 20 years ago, she's remained pretty active in the film industry year-after-year. Most notably, she starred in the 2010 remake of MOTHER'S DAY, obviously as the "mother" of three sons who've just attempted to rob a bank and return to their old home, only to discover it's being occupied by new owners. Once they take the owners and their friends hostage, Rebecca steps in to take control of the situation, and lets her evil sparks fly off the screen once again. It's strange how she can pull off playing such a sadistic c*nt, and yet still look this naturally ravishing in the real world...
That last picture might be a tad older than the rest, but I just had to include it. If you caught AMERICAN REUNION, you'll most certainly remember DeMornay's cameo as Finch's mom, who allowed Steve Stifler to finally get his long-awaited, mother-f*cking revenge once and for all. It was a terrific cameo, and DeMornay proved that not only is she still sexy, but she can still act sexy. And no offense to the lovely Jennifer Coolidge, but if I had a chance to housesit for either Finch of Stifler, I'd take the Finchmeister all the way.
Photo taken from the dictionary, under "MILF".
All in all, it appears Rebecca DeMornay never left the "hottie train", it was just a "runaway hottie train", still choo-chooing its way through Alaska, hopefully heading for Sarah Palin's rosebushes. Currently on her plate, Rebecca is supposed to be seen in a Japanese-remake horror film called APARTMENT 1303 3-D, which has already been released in Russia. No idea when that's going to pop up in the States, but I'm much more anxious to see the project she's currently working on, ESCORT SERVICE. Now that's a winning movie-title if I've ever heard one. She's a class act and a remarkable hottie. Here's hoping you rise to the surface once again, Rebecca DeMornay! And if not, well, sometimes you just gotta say... "what the f*ck?"!