I heard rumblings about the movie Bettie Page Reveals All for a long time and have been following the website, as they raised money for, and finally got it finished. It is a documentary about Bettie Page's life, narrated by Bettie herself! To learn more about the film, read on...
One great thing about living in the Buffalo, NY area is that it is centrally located within a 2-4 hour drive of many cool cities including Toronto (Canada), Cleveland (Ohio), and Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania). Rochester, NY is just a stone's throw away, so you can imagine what I was thinking when I saw that Bettie Page Reveals All would be showing at the famous George Eastman House in Rochester.....ROAD TRIP! Recently the Cats Like Us crew took a day trip and journeyed to Roch-cha-cha.
First stop--lunch. We like to eat, and we like BBQ. So our first stop was The Original Sticky Lips BBQ Pit (http://stickylipsbbq.com/stickylips/). Located in what was once an automobile showroom (and later Carvel’s Ice Cream) is now the two-story Sticky Lips. It's decked out in vintage Life Magazine covers and nostalgia everywhere you look.
We heard good things about the food too and we were not disappointed. I ordered a blackened chicken sandwich with sides, and not only were my lips sticky, they were burning with blackened seasonings. Absolutely delicious! Everyone else in our party ordered some form of BBQ, pulled pork or ribs and it really was the best I've had, not to mention the corn bread with honey is like eating moist cake--we ordered seconds! They even have offerings for the non-carnivores, and also have a second jukejoint location, in Henrietta, NY that was featured on Man vs. Food Nation.
Once we were satiated it was time to head back on the road, for a brief 7 minute ride to find the Dryden Theater for Bettie Page Reveals All. This theater is attached to the George Eastman House. (http://www.eastmanhouse.org/) The theatre was constructed in 1951 but looks brand new inside and seats 500, and is host to many famous movies. (If I lived closer I would become a member-- they show often overlooked movies. For example, they screen films like The Movies of David Lynch and “Off beat Valentine's movies” like Harold and Maude and Lolita. Great movies to add to watch and enjoy, but we were there to see Bettie today--all of her.
Bettie Page Reveals All
Bettie Page Reveals All is a documentary about the life of Bettie Page, much of which I already knew, but unlike the other movies about her you get to hear the story in her own voice. Bettie overcame so many hardships that she kept private, but continued to be strong willed. Whether she was photographed nude, in pinup or fetish style her exuberant personality shined through in her modeling. In in the movie Bettie says, “I was just doin' my job” and it's matter-a-fact statements like this, that remind you she was a real person. Her attitude toward sexuality at the time was unheard of and she made sex fun with a combination of naughty and nice (It's something I hope to strive for. *wink*wink*) and yes you WILL see ALL of her in this movie.
Everyone in our group very much enjoyed the film. It's wonderful to see the rare photographs and images of her set into the time period they actually happened along with all the interviews from people that actually knew her. Her voluntary disappearance from modeling and much later death, really makes her even more mysterious and iconic. She truly was the queen of the pinups!
You can check The Bettie Page Reveals All website for screenings:. http://www.bettiepagemovie.com/index.php
R.I.P. Bettie -- Your fan,
P.S. My first encounter with Bettie was about twenty years ago. I had short bangs and very long hair and someone came up to me at a club and said, “You look like Bettie Page.” I didn't know who they were talking about, but I did some research and couldn't have been more flattered. Looking back, I wish pop culture didn't appropriate her image so much because I always wanted to keep her for myself, but then again there is / was no one else like her to take her place!