From the femme fatale of the early cinema to her post-feminist rebirth, this lavishly illustrated book and comprehensive guide traces the history of these dangerously alluring, manipulative, and desperate lethal ladies.
Femme Fatale surveys the history of the femme fatale in world cinema, with more than 300 photographs testifying to the power of these mysterious women. The book begins with the silent period and itsvamps, like Theda Bara, Pola Negri, Clara Bow, and Bebe Daniels, then m oves on to the Pre-Code sound period of American films, which, showing liberated attitudes toward sex and women, featured actresses like Jean Harlow, Marlene Dietrich, and Greta Garbo. The story continues with the noir 1940s, when the femme fatale became truly lethal – including actresses like Ava Gardner, Rita Hayworth, and Barbara Stanwyck. In the repressive 1950s, the international femme fatale took the fore – Brigitte Bardot, Maria Felix, Elizabeth Taylor, Anita Ekberg, etc. Finally,the authors turn to the revolutionary post-feminist modern period, with an array of lethal ladies from all over the world, like Pam Grier, Salm a Hayek, Gong Li, Angelina Jolie, and Sharon Stone.