I love the all girl rock band The Runaways. I have all of their albums. I used to stare at their pictures in the Gatefold, trying to figure who was my favorite (Joan... but then Cherie.... and Lita was cool). I love their style, their hair, their attitudes. And I love their music. They were before my time but no matter. I needed these girls. I needed all girl groups (see The Ronettes, the 60s band She, and The Carrie Nations, even if a Russ Meyer/Roger Ebert creation. They were something else. And Joan Jett thought so too).
I also love that they, those Runaways, rocked out on their terms, using bad boy rock star swagger with sexual female aggression. Sure they were young -- teenagers -- but they seemed more in charge with their sexuality and what they wanted than say... Jessica Simpson or every other trussed up pop tart of late. It was in your face and honest and real rock and roll.
If the David Bowie obsessed sexy Cherie Curie was going to wear her lingerie on stage (before Madonna, by the way), good for her. If future rock star Joan Jett was the ultimate bad ass in the leather jacket, hanging with The Germs and the Dead Boys and later covering epic Gary Glitter songs (yes, we want to touch you there, Joan), god bless her. And making them even cooler, all of the girls not only loved Cheap Trick, but they opened for them (as well as other great bands like The Ramones and Van Halen). What's not to love about these girls?
They were tough, young, gorgeous and they could play. And they were teenagers. I adore them.
So I was excited by the idea of the Runaways movie (called, of course, "The Runaways"). And though others weren't sure about Kristen Stewart and Dakota Fanning paired up as Joan and Cherie, I thought they at least looked perfect. And guess what? They embody these women/girls splendidly. The movie is a little thin (Lita Ford was barely there -- and perhaps that's how Miss Ford wanted it), but focusing on the young actresses as Curie and Jett, they worked beautifully. And of course, the often brilliant Michael Shannon is perfectly cast as Kim Fowley.
Maybe I'm just a sucker for platform shoes, feathered hair and super tight jeans writ large. But, well, I'm a human being after all.
I talked with the young actresses, briefly, and they discussed Jett, Curie and the band's
sexuality. Both were charming. Watch below: