View Full Version : Christina -- 1940s Femme Fatale

20th November 2005, 08:46
I was thinking about those wickedly dangerous new images of Christina Schmidt at Torrid -- especially about the red-dress image -- and I think they reflect a 1940s style of the femme fatale. You know -- the kind that tempt private detectives like the ones in Raymond Chandler or Dashiell Hammett novels, like Humphrey Bogart's Sam Spade. The kind that you never really know if they're bad, or good -- or somewhere in between.

And that's what makes them so exciting.

There was an article just the other day about a publisher of these film-noir-type novels, and the kind of sirens who appear on the covers:


Note the descriptions:

- "a dangerously curvy blonde bathed in the cool light of a neon sign. One hand caresses the couch behind her, and the other holds a pistol. Come hither, but at your peril."

- "She has to convey a sense of raw sensuality and danger."

- "poured into a skin-tight dress"

All of these descriptions fit Christina perfectly, in this latest shoot. It's too bad it isn't a tie-in with an actual movie, with Christina starring as one of these femmes fatales. She would suit the role perfectly. But I'm delighted that Torrid organized a shoot like this. They really are creating something extraordinary with Christina.

I just wish Torrid were publishing a magazine, and that this was a themed layout.

20th November 2005, 11:36
<br>Your take on this latest shoot is most intriguing. In Christina's new black/purple image, one could even interpret the position of the hand as a visual echo of a firearm, with which she will coyly menace a Philip Marlowe, or a Sam Spade.

And incidentally, what an intriguing contest that article describes. (Aspiring plus-size models may well wish to enter.) Note the organizer's description of the parameters of size that are appropriate for film-noir femmes fatales. He states that they should,<p><blockquote><i>"run the gamut from buxom to voluptuous to downright statuesque."</i></blockquote><p>That should indeed be the paradigm for <i>all</i> visual expressions of feminine beauty--i.e., that they <i>begin</i> at "buxom," and progress into even more seductively generous proportions.

The association of femme fatales with softly opulent shapes is almost inevitable. It is not coincidental that one refers to the attributes of a well-endowed figure as <i>"<strong>dangerous</strong> curves,"</i> for dangerous those curves certainly are--dangerously alluring, dangerously seductive, and dangerous to the media establishment. And this is also a visual expression of the character type of the femme fatale--an irresistible mix of vanity and vulnerability, almost too passionate for the world in which she lives, an embodiment of unbridled femininity in a constrainingly utilitarian environment.

And as a personification of this archetype, Christina would effortlessly compel any private investigator in a '40s film noir to forsake his law-abiding inclinations, and comply with her every whim.

Torrid fatale:<p><center><img src="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/cs/torrid08.jpg"></center>

20th November 2005, 22:08
There was an editorial that showed just how perfect more curvaceous shapes are for the type of fashion suggested in the contest... courtesy of Mode's '40s editorial starring Barbara Brickner and Kristin Briscoe:

(Image from the Wolf Models.de website.)

<i>[Image URL altered due to agency site revision--HSG]</i>

23rd November 2005, 11:29
Yes, Emily makes a great point by comparing Christina's new shots to the 1940s femme fatales. The fashions of that era were an apex of glamor we haven't seen since. And not only did curvy vixens appear in the pages of the hard-boiled detective novels, their sisters also appeared as the pin up girls carried by the US soldiers overseas and painted on airplanes. Yet another example of how timeless beauty inspires.