Thursday, August 18, 2011

Lewis, Jenny

As a kid, it didn't get bigger than a weekly trip to The Movie Store (seriously, that was the name of the movie store. We hadn't quite hit Blockbuster status yet). Each Friday night, my older brother and I would accompany my dad to The Movie Store, which was followed by a trip to the drugstore in the same strip mall, for candy.

One of our favorite joint movies was "The Wizard," which stars Fred Savage, Luke Edwards and an utterly brilliant (depending on your definition) Jenny Lewis. The quick plot: Luke is a young boy placed in an institution after the death of his twin sister. His brother, Fred Savage, helps to break him out of said institution and they go on the run to California - "California" being the only word Luke has uttered since his sister's death. Meanwhile, their loving father (Beau Bridges!) comes looking for them, as does an evil runaway child bounty hunter.

On the road, they met up with Jenny Lewis, a badass runaway who quickly realizes that Luke is a Nintendo prodigy. In an effort to convince their parents that Luke should not be institutionalized, Luke and Fred agree to enter him in a Nintendo competition that happens to be located in California (A foolproof plan if I've ever heard one.). The trio spends the rest of the movie dodging the bounty hunter and other unsavory characters, as they hustle their way across the country to the competition. Without spoiling the ending, it's worth noting that the game being played in the final round of the competition is... the newly released (at the time) SUPER MARIO BROTHERS 3. As you can see, The Wizard is a timeless classic, provided you were born between the years 1983 and 1987.

I must have watched The Wizard fifty times in my childhood, along with Jenny Lewis' other big films, Troop Beverly Hills and Big Girls Don't Cry. Girly girl that I was, I loved that Jenny always played a hardened tomboy with negligent parents.

Imagine my surprise when I found out in 2005 that Jenny Lewis was the lead singer of one of my favorite bands, Rilo Kiley! I pretty much lost it.

Here's my favorite scene from The Wizard:

And here's my favorite Jenny Lewis song, though I'm not sure what the backstory on the video is:

I think she made the right call on joining the music scene, and on keeping her childhood bangs intact.

Jenny Lewis, thank you for 20 years of entertainment. You're a goddess.


mm said...

I'm going to politely disagree about her "childhood bangs". My overly judgmental self says a new hair style would be advised.