Someone I know recently dyed their hair pink. It was previously purple, or maybe green or blue. I forget. Whatever it was, I remember it looked cool at the time. I always noticed it. And let’s face it, if you’ve got bright hair, weird hair, or queer hair, you’re automatically twice as interesting as the rest of us. At least in my book.
It’s sort of the same with tattoos. I start asking myself, is this person more creative? More artistic? A tortured soul? Perhaps they are. I’d like to hope so. Whatever the reason, I find the creative expression people do to their bodies to be endlessly fascinating. I get drawn in, like a moth to a flame. And yes, maybe it’s a basic take, but I’m sticking with it. Each to their own, right?
And this pondering got me thinking about movie characters with bright hair; as historically there’s been a bunch — from Natalie Portman’s stripper in Closer to pixie dream girl Ramona Flowers in Scott Pilgrim. So I wanted to pick out some favourites. Ones I’ve liked, for one reason or another.
Who would yours be?
Natalie Portman as Alice in Closer (2004)
Except maybe her debut Leon (1994), up to this point Portman had played straight roles with little edge. Closer feels like she wanted to show audiences a different side — in a movie described by one critic as ‘four attractive people showing their unattractive sides’.
Milla Jovovich as Leeloo in The Fifth Element (1997)
I have to hand it to Luc Besson, this movie had glorious outfits and loved to play with colour. For many of us growing up in the ’90s, it was a go-to favourite. And Jovovich as Leeloo, with her bright orange hair and braces, was adorable in the role.
Angelina Jolie as Gia Curangi in Gia (1998)
This was probably the first time I saw Angelina Jolie in a film. She was beautiful, hypnotic and unpredictable as Gia, arguably America’s first supermodel, who sadly met a tragic end. The movie isn’t the greatest, but Jolie’s performance was mesmerising.
Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Romana Flowers in Scott Pilgrim Vs The World (2010)
Winstead was the ultimate manic pixie dream girl in Edgar Wright’s movie, adapted from a series of graphic novels. She’s cute, she roller skates and can travel through sub space. The only downside is she has seven evil exes that you have to defeat. You can currently see her playing an assassin in Kate (2021), alongside Woody Harrelson.
Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Noni in Beyond The Lights (2014)
This romantic drama starred Mbatha-Raw, with one critic saying she gave ‘a powerhouse performance’. It’s a well reviewed film that won quite a few awards. For those that don’t know Mbatha-Raw, you may have recently seen her in the nicest episode of Black Mirror, called San Junipero. Or most recently in TV show Loki.
Lea Seydoux as Emma in Blue Is The Warmest Colour (2013)
Seydoux was chipping away at stardom for a few years, with parts in Robin Hood, Midnight In Paris and Mission Impossible – Ghost Protocol. When Blue came out it won the Palme d’Or, and Seydoux went on to star in two Bond movies. Coming up, she’s got a David Cronenberg sci-fi thriller called Crimes Of The Future.
Kate Winslet as Clara in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
I remember seeing this romantic sci-fi movie at the time and finding it heartbreaking. The film was directed by Michel Gondry and written by Charlie Kaufman, and followed an estranged couple who had erased each other from their memories. Winslet got an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress for her performance.
Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad (2016)
Let’s face it, Margot was born to play this character. She practically upstaged everyone else involved in this movie, and was so popular with fans that the studio gave her a standalone movie with Birds Of Prey (2020). I have yet to see James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad (2021), but I bet she’s one of the best things in that too.