Sue Lyon’s iconic portrayal of the impudent and vaguely teasing Dolores Haze was enough to give her a certain allure or erotic topicality or something in that realm. Lyon was 15 in ‘61 when Stanley Kubrick’s Lolita was shot, and the buzz from that film was enough to land her a supporting role in John Huston’s Night of the Iguana (‘64). Things gradually diminished after that. John Sayles‘ Alligator (‘80) was her final film.
Lyon passed on 12.26, at age 73. Condolences to fans, friends, comrades, acquaintances, etc.
HE respects that casual, gum-chewing, faintly lewd quality she seemed to radiate under Kubrick’s guidance. Whatever it was or wasn’t, Lyon’s “Lo” had a certain poise or attitude (not “sexuality” exactly but a kind of ownership of that without seeming to care one way or the other) that I never got from Dominique Swain’s performance (no offense) in Adrian Lyne’s Lolita.
Will Lyon occupy a slot in the Oscar telecast death reel? She should. Kubrick’s Lolita was quite the thing in the Kennedy era, and Lyon’s teenaged take-it-or-leave-it aroma or otherness was more or less what that thing was about.