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Femme Fatale [CRACKED]

A femme fatale (/ˌfɛm fəˈtæl/ or /ˌfɛm fəˈtɑːl/; French: [fam fatal]), sometimes called a maneater[1] or vamp, is a stock character of a mysterious, beautiful, and seductive woman whose charms ensnare her lovers, often leading them into compromising, deadly traps. She is an archetype of literature and art. Her ability to enchant, entice and hypnotize her victim with a spell was in the earliest stories seen as verging on supernatural; hence, the femme fatale today is still often described as having a power akin to an enchantress, seductress, witch, having power over men. Femmes fatales are typically villainous, or at least morally ambiguous, and always associated with a sense of mystification, and unease.[2]

Femme Fatale

The term originates from the French phrase femme fatale, which means 'deadly woman' or 'lethal woman'. A femme fatale tries to achieve her hidden purpose by using feminine wiles such as beauty, charm, or sexual allure. In many cases, her attitude towards sexuality is lackadaisical, intriguing, or frivolous. In some cases, she uses lies or coercion rather than charm. She may also make use of some subduing weapon such as sleeping gas, a modern analog of magical powers in older tales. She may also be (or imply that she is) a victim, caught in a situation from which she cannot escape.[3] A younger or underage version of a femme fatale is called a fille fatale, from the French phrase for 'deadly girl'.[citation needed]

In American early 20th-century films, a femme fatale character was referred to as a vamp, a reference to The Vampire, Philip Burne-Jones's 1897 painting, and Rudyard Kipling's later 1897 poem, and the 1909 play and 1915 film A Fool There Was.

The femme fatale archetype exists in the culture, folklore and myths of many cultures.[5] Ancient mythical or legendary examples include Inanna, Lilith, Circe, Medea, Clytemnestra, Lesbia, Tamamo no Mae, and Visha Kanyas. Historical examples from classical times include Cleopatra and Messalina, as well as the biblical figures Delilah, Jezebel, and Salome.[6] An example from Chinese literature and traditional history is Daji.

The femme fatale was a common figure in the European Middle Ages, often portraying the dangers of unbridled female sexuality. The pre-medieval inherited biblical figure of Eve offers an example, as does the wicked, seductive enchantress typified in Morgan le Fay. The Queen of the Night in Mozart's The Magic Flute shows her more muted presence during the Age of Enlightenment.[7]

The femme fatale flourished in the Romantic period in the works of John Keats, notably "La Belle Dame sans Merci" and "Lamia". Along with them, there rose the gothic novel The Monk featuring Matilda, a very powerful femme fatale. This led to her appearing in the work of Edgar Allan Poe, and as the vampire, notably in Carmilla and Brides of Dracula. The Monk was greatly admired by the Marquis de Sade, for whom the femme fatale symbolised not evil, but all the best qualities of women; his novel Juliette is perhaps the earliest wherein the femme fatale triumphs. Pre-Raphaelite painters frequently used the classic personifications of the femme fatale as a subject.

Femmes fatales appear in detective fiction, especially in its 'hard-boiled' sub-genre which largely originated with the crime stories of Dashiell Hammett in the 1920s. At the end of that decade, the French-Canadian villainess Marie de Sabrevois gave a contemporary edge to the otherwise historical novels of Kenneth Roberts set during the American Revolution.

During the film-noir era of the 1940s and early-1950s, the femme fatale flourished in American cinema. Examples include Brigid O'Shaughnessy, portrayed by Mary Astor, who murders Sam Spade's partner in The Maltese Falcon (1941); manipulative narcissistic daughter Veda (portrayed by Ann Blyth) in Mildred Pierce who exploits her indulgent mother Mildred (portrayed by Joan Crawford) and fatally destroys her mother's remarriage to stepfather Monte Barragon (portrayed by Zachary Scott); Gene Tierney as Ellen Brent Harland in Leave Her to Heaven (1945), and the cabaret singer portrayed by Rita Hayworth in Gilda (1946),[33] narcissistic wives who manipulate their husbands; Phyllis Dietrichson (Barbara Stanwyck) in Double Indemnity (1944), Ava Gardner in The Killers and Cora (Lana Turner) in The Postman Always Rings Twice, based on novels by Ernest Hemingway and James M. Cain respectively, manipulate men into killing their husbands.[33]

In the Hitchcock film The Paradine Case (1947), Alida Valli's character causes the deaths of two men and the near destruction of another. Another frequently cited example is the character Jane played by Lizabeth Scott in Too Late for Tears (1949); during her quest to keep some dirty money from its rightful recipient and her husband, she uses poison, lies, sexual teasing and a gun to keep men wrapped around her finger. Jane Greer remains notable as a murderous femme fatale using her wiles on Robert Mitchum in Out of the Past (1947). In Hitchcock's 1940 film and Daphne du Maurier's 1938 novel Rebecca, the eponymous femme fatale completely dominates the plot, even though she is already dead and we never see an image of her. Rocky and Bullwinkle's Natasha Fatale, a curvaceous spy, takes her name from the femme fatale stock character.

Academy Award-winning actress Marion Cotillard has frequently played femmes fatales, in such films as A Private Affair (2002), A Very Long Engagement, The Black Box, Inception, Midnight in Paris, The Dark Knight Rises and Macbeth. Nicole Kidman has also played a few femmes fatales in films as To Die For, The Paperboy, Moulin Rouge! and The Northman.

The archetype is also abundantly found in American television. One of the most famous femmes fatales of American television is Sherilyn Fenn's Audrey Horne of the David Lynch cult series Twin Peaks. In the TV series Femme Fatales, actress Tanit Phoenix played Lilith, the host who introduced each episode Rod Serling-style and occasionally appeared within the narrative. In the Netflix TV series Orange Is the New Black, actress Laura Prepon played Alex Vause, a modern femme fatale, who led both men and women to their destruction.

Femmes fatales appear frequently in comic books. Notable examples include Batman's long-time nemesis Catwoman, who first appeared in comics in 1940, and various adversaries of The Spirit, such as P'Gell.

The femme fatale is arguably the most recognizable element of film noir. Many famous actresses played femme fatales during noir's golden period, from Barbara Stanwyck to Rita Hayworth. Femme fatales have a negative reputation, with many considering them dangerous; however, not all femmes live up to the fatale part of their names. And while some are definitely deathly, others are less lethal.

Like every good noir, Who Framed Roger Rabbit has a femme fatale in Jessica Rabbit (voiced by Kathleen Turner), Roger's wife, who looks like a fantasy drawn to life. The film subverts noir's tropes with a femme that is everything but fatale, offering a brilliant commentary on the trope and the noir genre itself. After all, Jessica is not bad; she's just drawn that way.

Gilda looks and sounds like a femme fatale, but she isn't. The film subverts noir expectations by featuring a happy ending that goes against everything that came before. However, it gets away with it thanks to Hayworth's complex and layered take on a femme fatale that refused to be boxed into one category. In the end, turns out Gilda really is decent.

Kim Novak shines as the film's female lead and femme fatale. Playing dual roles in a story about obsession and trauma, Novak is tasked with embodying the unattainable concept of perfection. Ethereal and near-flawless under Hitchcock's singular eye, the actress takes a lighter approach to the femme fatale. Novak's Barton is both perpetrator and victim, and while she is far from the deathliest femme, she isn't exactly guilt-free.

Classic film noir has numerous femme fatales, but Brigid O'Shaughnessy is one of the most memorable. Played by the underrated Mary Astor, Brigid is the main antagonist in John Huston's noir classic The Maltese Falcon.

As one of the first noirs in the golden age period, Astor's O'Shaughnessy introduced many of the classic femme fatale elements audiences would come to love. She lies, cheats, manipulates, and kills to get her way, even if she has a soft spot for the tortured leading man. Still, Brigid O'Shaughnessy was the blueprint, a resilient and resourceful woman who, in the timeless words of Sam Spade, was good. Very good.

Gloria Swanson immortalized herself through the role of Norma. Delusional and with a quickly deteriorating psyche, Norma is the ultimate tragic star, unable to let go of her past. Unlike other femme fatales who flaunt their wickedness with pride, the selfish and deranged Norma is a prisoner of her mind. There's an overt layer of misery to her story, and even if she is Joe's demise, she remains a fascinating and tragic character.

Burt Lancaster made his film debut in 1946's The Killers opposite the now-iconic Ava Gardner. The timeless beauty plays Kitty Collins, the deadly and shameless femme fatale at the center of the film's action.

Few actresses ever looked so striking as Gardner in The Killers. The face, the hair, the costumes! Gardner's Kitty is lethal but beautiful, an irresistible woman everyone knows is dangerous, but very few can resist. Kitty Collins is an archetypical femme fatale, down to her final repentance, and Gardner gives one of her all-time best performances in the role. She packs more raw magnetism in one stroll than most people have in their entire bodies; can anyone blame Lancaster for falling to her feet? 041b061a72


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