Fade to (Karen) Black
Posted at 12:20 p.m. on Aug. 11, 2013
Karen Black, one of the faces of 1970s cinema, died on Aug. 8. Her obituary in the Washington Post, written by Adam Bernstein, has an almost perfect lede, encapsulating a life and an era in one paragraph:
Karen Black, an actress whose role as the acid-tripping prostitute in the movie “Easy Rider” launched her career as one of the emblematic tramps, vamps, kooks and down-and-outers of 1970s cinema, notably in “Five Easy Pieces,” “Nashville” and “The Great Gatsby,” died Aug. 8 at a hospital in Los Angeles. She was 74.
Black, whose role in “Airport 1975,” provided the infamous line that led to a book on 70s flicks, “The Stewardess is Flying the Plane!: American Films of the 1970s,” was indeed a fixture of those weirdo years. She’ll be missed.