Owen Gleiberman
December 07, 2007 AT 05:00 AM EST

Why do you obsess over an actor’s hair in your reviews?

Dear Owen, Are you aware that you begin more than a few of your reviews by referring to an actor’s hair and describing it in practically obsessive detail? What’s up with that? —Shawn

Dear Shawn, As a follicularly challenged male, I have to admit that I might have a sightly more vested interest than others in closely examining the hair follies of movie stars. Yet I would also argue that actors’ tonsorial disasters, be it Harrison Ford’s in Random Hearts, Kevin Costner’s in The Bodyguard, or Dustin Hoffman’s in Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium, are not only a lot of fun to make fun of — they can be just as relevant to how we see, experience, and remember a performance as far less cosmetic concerns. The irony is that current libel law forbids me from discussing — at least in any way that involves naming names — my true Hollywood hair obsession: the ever-increasing thicket of weaves and transplants that actors now use to camouflage their thinning manes. I would dearly love, someday, to kick off a review by getting into the bald truth of that. —Owen

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