Exposing the Blood and Guts of Hollywood’s Teen Girl Fantasy / Hyperallergic

Laura Parnes, still from “Hollywood Inferno (Episode One)” (2001/03). Alissa Bennett pictured. (image via LauraParnes.com)

Laura Parnes, still from “Hollywood Inferno (Episode One)” (2001/03). Alissa Bennett pictured. (image via LauraParnes.com)

LOS ANGELES — Laura Parnes’s four-disk video series Blood and Guts in Hollywoodexposes the idealized teenage dream for what it is: A boring, vapid fantasy of “love” that is marketed and sold to an audience of young dreamers searching for their soulmate in the illusions of silver screens and false idols. Leading up to the part where idyllic bubbles burst, Parnes’s work functions as part experimental film, part video art, and part surreal re-enactment of Kathy Acker’s groundbreaking book Blood and Guts in High School (1984), which influenced a generation of feminist writers, thinkers, and makers.

Where the thrill of Acker’s gory text and the emotional manipulation of teen-focused films pull out the threads on every heart patch sewn to a young girl’s backpack, Parnes’s videos come off as boring, staged, painfully acted shorts — they are not meant to entertain. They are meant to bludgeon the teenage dream to its untimely death. The four works of Parnes’ series act as an epic deconstruction of horror genre
films, capitalist underpinnings of the entertainment industry, and cliché
star-fucking fantasies, while probing the ways that “teenage rebellion” is crafted to a mass media audience. The videos are dense, non-episodic, non-linear juxtapositions of fictionalized realities.

Read the full review here: http://hyperallergic.com/136247/exposing-the-blood-guts-of-hollywoods-teen-girl-fantasy/