A Dangerous Dame’s Debut

Carol Ohmart

I believe no less an authority on such things than the Film Noir Foundation’s quarterly magazine Noir City consider The Scarlet Hour from 1956 the end of the classic cycle of films noir. I’ll leave that up to film scholars.

The Scarlet Hour Lobby Card

Directed by none other than the great Michael Curtiz, the film was supposed to launch the career of Carol Ohmart (1927 – 2002), a Seattle/Spokane beauty pageant contestant who’d been modeling for famed comics illustrator Milton Caniff as “Copper Calhoun” in his Steve Canyon strip, and who the studio was already promoting as a “female Brando” and the next Marilyn Monroe. But every blonde starlet was probably billed as the next Monroe then. Apparently playing a manipulative, alcoholic schemer didn’t endear Ohmart with movie goers, since she was dropped by Paramount shortly after, and her career never really took off quite as planned. Many know her best as Vincent Price’s nasty wife in The House On Haunted Hill. But I say she made one hell of a great femme fatale in her film debut, even if some highbrow critics claim that The Scarlet Hour was a lackluster finale to film noir’s original classic era.

The Scarlett Hour B&W

L.A., 1990.

Jennifer Tilly 1990

She’d be a fully accredited film noir goddess for her performance in 1996’s Bound if nothing else, though she’s played her share of other femmes fatales and bad girlz. Above is Jennifer Tilly looking languid but still dangerous in an L.A. hotel room from 1990.

Morgan’s Got A Gun.

Morgan Fairchild

There are a lot of things you can bring with you to bed. A good book, a glass of wine, a giggle-inducing toy or just your undivided attention. A gun, on the other hand, may not always be welcome. Perennial television and big screen femme fatale Morgan Fairchild shown above, the film/show source unknown.

Tu Bei’s Noir Series

Tu Bei 1

Tu Bei is a US concept artist and illustrator, with an array of gorgeous and diverse work to be viewed at Art Of Tu — artoftu.com. Here are just a few examples, above a character design concept, and below, three pieces from Tu Bei’s “Noir Series”.

Tu Bei 3Tu Bei 2Tu Bei 4

 

A Good Day To Die

good day to die polek holdova

A good day to die? Hmmm. Guess that all depends on which end of the gun you’re on.

“Good Day To Die”, by Lucem, from Polek Holdova.

Femmes Fatales ‘Round The World (Even Romania)

XaviRo 1

There’s more to Romania than Transylvania and Count Dracula. There’s Mihai Cvasnievschi at Bucharest’s XaviRo Studio, master of analog and digital portrait, commercial and art photography. There’s much to see at the xavi.ro site, but here are some striking femmes fatale (or ‘stiletto gumshoes’…you decide) images spotted there. ‘Noir’, classic noir, neo-noir, Euro-noir…whatever.  Dark and dangerous is always a lovely but lethal look.

XaviRo 2XaviRo 3

Guillem’s Femme Fatale

femme fatale by guillem h pongiluppi

It’s titled, simply enough, “Femme Fatale”, and clearly it was fatal.

A darkly beautiful bit of art from Barcelona, Spain artist/illustrator Guillem H. Pongiluppi. To learn more about the artist and his work (mostly concept illustration and excellent fantasy style work), go to the artist’s website at guilluemhp.com.

guillemhp dot com

 

Gretel Macabre

Notorious

Croatian model ‘Gretel Macabre’ (lets just assume that’s not her birth name) has a gallery full of retro-pinup, cosplay and glamour shots done with various photographers, including a couple of noir-ish bad girlz, one of which I seem to see everywhere from Pinterest to Tumblr and you-name-it-dot-com. Above is Gretel in “Notorious” by Deyan Baric, and below she’s about as classic a fatal-femme as you could ask for in “Film Noir Femme Fatale” shot by Matt Frederick.

Film Noir Femme Fatale

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑