"She was one of the working stiff actors who made American movies a sort of extended family for me. If I don't do this for her, who will?" Memory and movies collide when the narrator of Comfort and Joi, award-winning screenwriter Joseph Dougherty's imaginative blend of fiction and film fact, sets out to document the life and work of bosomy blonde bombshell Joi Lansing, a minor glamour girl who appeared in such "classics" as Hillbillys in a Haunted House and Queen of Outer Space. Alone in a borrowed house on the California coast during a winter weekend, he indulges his fascination with the pin-up who rose from extra girl to work with Orson Welles, only to end her career in grade-z horror pictures. Offbeat movie history from the fringes of Hollywood triggers haunting personal memories as he follows this "beautiful beacon in a Sargasso of bad filmmaking" and finds an unexpected path to his own past. "Dougherty is a humanist who argues that each of us has to look, listen, choose, and commit.
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December 17, 2004
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