Voice Choice: Lupe


The life of Mexican bombshell Lupe Vélez doesn’t stray too far from the usual Hollywood tale, though the way it ended is far from ordinary. Her demise was so bizarre, in fact, that myths surrounding her death spawned the films Hollywood Babylon (1959) and Andy Warhol’s Lupe (1965), which starred another distressed starlet, Edie Sedgwick. One version of her death by overdose has her falling down a flight of stairs, another drowning in a toilet—but José Rodríguez-Soltero’s 1966 film Lupe goes beyond the suicide and recalls the life of the determined actress, who made an improbable journey from convent school to Broadway. In Rodríguez-Soltero’s film, Lupe is played by another of Warhol’s superstars, Puerto Rican actor Mario Montez, who pays homage to the late actress with a campy version of her life, exemplifying the outlandish gossip and music of Hollywood’s golden era. So which Warhol darling plays a better Lupe: Montez or Sedgwick? See for yourself. At 7:30, Anthology Film Archives, 32 Second
Avenue, 212-505-5181, $8 ARACELI CRUZ