Saturday, January 19, 2019

Female Spy

In the past, actresses became movie-stars because they had talent. Today many celebrities utterly lack skill. The contrast is distinct.

Marlene Dietrich was one of the first and biggest movie-stars. She lived the span of the last century (1901-1992) and rose to fame during difficult years between two world wars. Born in Germany, she had to navigate appeals from the Nazis to join them. In 1939 she renounced her heritage and became an American citizen.

One of Dietrich's earliest successes is "Dishonored" (1931), a romantic spy movie made by Josef von Sternberg. In it, Dietrich plays an attractive prostitute who is recruited by the Austrian secret service to become a spy against Russia. The spy chief is looking for "a woman who knows how to handle men" and spots Dietrich. He offers her the task and she agrees out of duty to country. If it isn't obvious yet, her role is based on the true story of female spy Mata Hari.

Dietrich performs her missions in sequined gowns, seamed stockings and peep-toe pumps. And, most alluring, an air of insouciance. In this role, Dietrich presents the rare combination of feminine beauty and inner strength.

My favorite line, spoken to Dietrich's character, is: "If you keep me here another minute, I'd not only be in danger of losing my life but of falling in love with you, you devil!"

Who wouldn't want to look this good?!


  1. I haven't watched many movies with her but of course I know of her. I must say that coat she is wearing in the first photo is fantastic!

    Have you guys been hit with the snow storm?


    1. It was supposed to arrive last night but warm temperature turned it into rain. No snow at all here.

  2. I’ve never seen a single movie with her in it (I know, I know!!). Thank you for sharing this along with the stunning photographs. What a beauty!

    PS: many many heartfelt thanks for your incredibly kind card. Bryan and I are in mourning over our beloved pup’s passing, but I know that time will mend some of those wounds. And we’ll return to fostering to give a second chance to other pups in need when ready/ anyway, it meant the world to have you think of us ❤️❤️❤️

  3. I've seen some of her movies, but strangely enough not "Dishonored". She's a true legend! xxx

  4. I agree she is legend and my husband is also quite the fan. Yes, a sad commentary on today’s s media situation.. all about PR amd not talent.
    Except for lady Gaga, who has both engines roaring !

  5. I always thought the fierce, often androgynous, sense of Style she possessed was fabulous!

  6. “At the best of times gender is difficult to determine.” Marlene Dietrich