“It’s All Happening!”
Ah, Penny Lane. It was Kate Hudson’s sunflower curls, slow smile and smooth middle finger that were responsible for planting wispy dreams of travel in my head. Almost Famous is the coming of age film about William Miller, an awkward fifteen year old reporter who goes on tour with a rock band on the brink of fame to write their cover story for Rolling Stone.
Along the way, he meets the luminous Penny Lane, leader of the Band Aids, who explains; “We are not Groupies. Groupies sleep with rockstars because they want to be near someone famous. We are here because of the music, we inspire the music. We are Band Aids.”
She is also partly responsible for my favorite scene of all time, ever:
Penny almost wins the fantasy over real life, coaxing William to join with her…“Hey, when we go to Morocco… I think we should wear completely different clothes… and be completely different people.”
And at fifteen, I may have identified a little too much with her wanderlust reasonings. The story is achingly real for a tale of rockstars, and Penny, in her battle to shut out the real world, epitomizes it. She wants to heal the hearts of rock and roll..only for them to “sell” her for a case of beer. She is a young boy’s first love, but only a summertime lust for a troubled rocker. And if that isn’t the classic love triangle, what is, really?
In a film about being almost famous, nearing the energy… Penny Lane, always just offstage, is the one who steals the spotlight-finally boards her plane to Morocco…and in the end, slips away, leaving behind a trail of rose petals for those to remember her.
…Cameron Crowe, who directed this quasi-autobiographical story, created this character (in part) from his friend at the time, Pennie Lane. You can check her out here.