Factory Girl is the as-yet-unreleased film about the relationship between the pop culture artist Andy Warhol (Guy Pearce) and one of his entourage, a rich wild child named Edie Sedgwick (Sienna Miller), whose appearances in Warhol's bohemian films and at his side in social functions during the 1965-66 era gave her the metaphorical fifteen minutes of fame Warhol once spoke of. Sedgwick managed to turn a casual introduction to Warhol into a strange relationship in which the artist seemed to promote the rich girl as his doppelganger.

Eventually Sedgwick developed other interests and parted company with Warhol. In the film's version of the story, she betrayed her mentor by shifting her cultural allegiance to another icon, Bob Dylan (as portrayed by Darth Vader!), thus violating Warhol's one and only commandment that his followers could worship no other gods. The choice of Dylan was particularly distasteful to Warhol since the folk singer despised the crass commercialism, the gossipy backstabbing, and the high school style of social stratification which characterized Warhol's studio (the titular Factory). When Dylan got married to another woman and Warhol cast her aside, Sedgwick degenerated into a spiral of self-pity and substance abuse that would eventually claim her life at age 28.

As I watched Factory Girl, I was wondering to myself, "Why did the filmmakers make this story?" You have to believe that they thought it was an interesting and involving story, or an enlightening one, or one that would offer some moral lesson, or some combination of those three elements, but in reality it is none of the three. To begin with, all of the characters are unsympathetic. Worse still they are uninteresting. Warhol and his confederates never seem to have anything worthwhile to say. Their entire artistic conceit seems to consist of terse verbal irony. Of course, that portrayal does seem to offer a fairly good reflection of Warhol's attitude toward everything. His artistic stock in trade was to ridicule trash not by vilifying it, but by deifying it and (presumably) sneering condescendingly when the bourgeois suckers bought his works without realizing that their taste was being ridiculed even as they wrote the checks. This sort of ironic posturing doesn't translate well into dialogue. Warhol just sounds like a complete ass when he drawls out a "well, that was nice" dripping with insincerity, or when he asks Sedgwick if she's already spent the fifty dollars he gave her months earlier. Perhaps Warhol was creepy, unsympathetic, shy, and a bit of a dullard, but he had to have some qualities that elevated him to the level he reached. He became the very symbol of a time and place, and the qualities that got him there are not in evidence in this script. Moreover, Warhol's hangers-on seemed to think it was fun to hang with him every night until all hours, but the reason for that attitude cannot be seen here. The group seems to consist of a bunch of snobs waiting for someone to slip so that they can judge him or her harshly. They're like vampires feeding on one another's blood.

Sedgwick's own story is just one more of those "innocents caught in the maelstrom of fame" tales, and I didn't see any new spin to make this one worth watching. It's a grade-B version of Jolie's interpretation of Gia Carangi. Edie comes off as a spoiled, shallow and giggly airhead  - Warhol's designated eye candy, with no real contribution to make to the Factory team, as if she were the Paris Hilton of her own age, which I suppose she was. (She even mentions that she stopped wearing underwear.) The script tries to gain some depth by positing a relationship between her troubled home life and her ultimate collapse, but that is treated superficially and obliquely, so that we never know whether the things she says about her family really have any bearing on her fate, or whether they are even true.

You would think that a film with no entertainment value would at least be a good history lesson, but that's not the case.  Sedgwick's rumored romantic relationship with Bob Dylan, which Dylan always denied, is treated as if it were an established fact. Dylan and his lawyers raised enough of a stink about the portrayal that the character was renamed so that the film could be released without legal problems. Of course the guitar-toting, harmonica-playing character still looks, dresses, and talks exactly like Dylan, and no effort is made to disguise his identity, but since his name is "Billy Quinn," and since every other character in the film uses the name of a real person, Billy Quinn can't be Dylan. Ahem. Wink-wink. Nudge-nudge.

So one is neither entertained by this film nor involved in it, and one cannot reliably learn from it. In short, this is just a very weak film. It only runs 83 minutes between the credits, but it seems longer than War and Peace. In fact, it seems longer than the actual Napoleonic Wars, because it really has nothing to engage the audience, and is basically just an extended celebrity impersonation skit like the kind they used to do on SCTV.

Except without the laughs.


Film Clips:



Sienna Miller



Tara Summers










Catch the deluxe version of Other Crap in real time, with all the bells and whistles, here.





Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe). White asterisk: expanded format. Blue asterisk: not mine. No asterisk: it probably sucks.





Mon Idole (2002)

Mon Idole (2002), which supposedly has an International English title of Whatever You Say, but that must be purely hypothetical since it had no theatrical release in any English-speaking country. It was called My Idol in a few festival appearances in the US. It evidently had a theatrical run in France and Belgium, and has made it to DVD in Germany and the Netherlands.

Guillaume Canet is an ambitious TV production assistant, and does audience warm-up for sort of a game show version of the Jerry Springer program, in which one person is humiliated and wins the game if he or she can keep from crying.

Canet has a girlfriend, ambitions, and a good idea for a new show, which the star of the current show tries to take credit for. The famed producer of the TV station takes an interest in Canet, offers him some help with his career, and invites him to his country house for the weekend. There, it becomes apparent that the producer is impotent, and both he and his wife, Diane Kruger are bored, and it will be Canet's task to solve both problems, in return for riches and a chance at his own show. Then things go terribly wrong.

I will say that you won't guess the ending early.

 I found it terribly long and not very intelligent. I also saw nothing to make me laugh, which is my minimum requirement from a comedy. Your mileage may vary substantially, since IMDb readers say 6.2 and, judging by the comments, this film has a devoted following. I am not among that group.

Based on the IMDb score, and the presumed following, this is a C on our scale, but  I would have given it lower marks based on my personal assessment.

Diane Kruger shows a breast and buns in the one post-sex scene.






And the beat goes on as Mary Carey and Kaylynn return for even more body baring from "Sexy Movie". Today the girls are pretty explicit in these caps and four zipped .wmv clips.


Notes and collages

The Supernatural Ladies

Margot Kidder

in The Amityville Horror





Sabrina Bryan in "Masters of Horror: The Screwfly Solution' (Aired in December)


Kerry Norton in "Masters of Horror: The Screwfly Solution' (Aired in December)

Liliane Lamaitre-Auger in La Vie Revee

Liliane Lamaitre-Auger and Veronique Le Flaguais in La Vie Revee

 Veronique Le Flaguais in La Vie Revee