• Kristin Buchholz-MacKillop

The Timeless Style of the Film Noir Femme Fatale


If there is one thing that can be relied upon to generate the element of surprise, it's answering the door at 10am for the Menzies delivery guy dressed in full film noir femme fatale hair and makeup. It generates the kind of authentic reaction shot that would have made Lawrence Olivier himself green with envy.


I realized this week that we are quickly approaching the time of year where "festive glamour" is foisted upon us. Everywhere you look, the shops are encouraging us to dress for the upcoming festivities in what I imagine a peacock would look like if he decided to attend a fancy dress party as a foil-wrapped baked potato. And while I love a little sparkle and shine as much as the next gal, this year, for reasons I'm not even entirely sure I can articulate, I'm just not feeling it.


Okay, that's a lie. Yes, I can articulate it, and I know exactly why I'm not feeling it. I think my aversion to this year's incarnation of Festive Barbie is grounded in the fact that we women have suffered a bit of a blow of late. I blame the Donald Trumps and the Brett Kavanaughs of the world for what appears to be this new "sit there and take it" approach to all things feminine. And that does not just apply to feminism for that matter, but that's the scope of this post.


As a means of dealing with this New World Order, I've found solace in one of my favorite film genres, film noir. And of course you can't have film noir without the most glamorous of anti-heroines, the femme fatale. Smart, sassy, ambitious, murderous, and unapologetically feminine, the film noir femme fatale is as glamorous as she is pissed-off - a perfect balm for our times. What's more, it's a great look for women of any age. In fact, I daresay it's even better when you're a little bit older. After all, any femme fatale worth her salt has definitely burned-through a few husbands for the insurance claims. You can't get all of that done when you're in your twenties, that takes commitment.

Gina Bacconi evening dress (old)



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