Femme Fatales: The Women of Film Noir

mfah_film_filmnoir_300x250_A_2When we think of film noir, we think of few things over and over: Humphrey Bogart, dim lights and dark shadows, Humphrey Bogart (hey, he played Philip Marlowe and Sam Spade, what do you want?), thugs with guns, and dames that are never up to any good (just ask Orson Welles in The Lady From Shanghai).

So intrinsic to the effect of film noir are each of these pieces that they deserve to be studied and examined on their own, to ask, “why did they turn these stories into what they eventually became?”

This August the Museum of Fine Arts Houston will be doing just that, when it presents “Femme Fatales: The Women of Film Noir,” in conjunction with the Houston Film Critics Society.

Over the course of four weekends, beginning Sunday, August 4, the MFAH will spotlight four of the best exemplars of the form, with Gilda on August 4, The Blue Dahlia on August 10 & August 11, Road House (not the Patrick Swayze movie) on August 16 & August 18, and Kiss Me Deadly on August 23 & August 25, complete with introductions and explanations from some of the HFCS members before each film.

8cae46b43b0083dd9fa931ce8ae05a9eFor an added bonus, all four films will be shown in glorious 35mm prints, the way your parents remember seeing movies, and pretty soon the way you won’t be able to see movies again.

Join them at the HFCS in August to witness what Janey Place called one of the few periods in film when women were active and activated in their own right and where they began to derive strength and place of purpose (even if it was dark purpose) from their femininity.

Femme Fatales, one of the defining characteristics of one of the defining genres of 20th century film — the noir.


Post by . This entry was posted on Saturday, August 3rd, 2013. Filed under Features, Posts.

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