The list of influential films goes on: I didn't suspect that Raintree County would fit my dissertation; watched Suddenly, Last Summer with the "male gaze" in mind; was delighted to see how A Place in the Sun complemented Dreiser's American Tragedy. All three films were made with Monty Clift, who could move fluidly between lover and psychiatrist.
Sometimes I think that the Taylor I remember best is the actress of Giant and East of Eden, but then I'm reminded of Ash Wednesday or Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, as well as films I didn't see, like her iconic Cleopatra.
And then I remember her marriages. One headline I always show my journalism students is this one:
How Many Husbands Are Enough?
Liz Says 6
because it demonstrates that the only appropriate way to have a question in a hed is to answer it. (This hed was obviously pre-1991.)
But then there's her groundbreaking activism for AIDS research, her friendship with Michael Jackson, her jewelry, her perfume, and always, throughout each film, each fundraiser, each friendship or business venture, there were her shockingly beautiful violet eyes, for which technicolor was truly made.
What do gentle readers remember most about Elizabeth Taylor?