Noir fiction and modern femme fatales

    Besides her role as adorable sister of Jake:
    Maggie Gyllenhaal and Jake Gyllenhaal attending the premiere of "Mona Lisa Smile" (2003)
    Maggie has displayed her seductress/femme-fatale side as well.

    Katy Perry is one of the most visible modern starlets who combines femme-fatale/pin-up iconography in her photoshoots/videoclipsKaty Perry in GLAMOUR (UK) September 2010Katy Perry photoshoot by PHIL KNOTT for The Guardian (2010)Katy Perry in Zink magazineKaty Perry in FHM UK Shoot by Diana Scheunemann (2008)Katy Perry photoshoot for People magazine (2010) by Robert TrachtenbergKaty Perry in OUT magazine

    Another sculptural redheaded actress (Mad Men) is Christina HendricksChristina Hendricks in GQ UK photoshoot by Miles Aldridge September 2010

    Most of my favorite photoshoots deal with actresses showing their inner femme-fatale souls in fierce photoshoots as:
    Emmy RossumKirsten DunstNaomi WattsJennifer ConnellyMarion CotillardKristen StewartLindsay LohanRose McGowanMary Elizabeth Winstead (Ramona in Scott Pilgrim vs the world)Zooey Deschanel (Summer Finn in "500 days of Summer")Paz VegaMalin Akerman in Vanity Fair (Outtake)Amy Adams

    Maggie Gyllenhaal as Allison Jimeno in "World Trade Center"Maria Bello as Donna McLoughlin in "World Trade Center"
    Maggie Gyllenhaal with Oliver Stone filming World Trade Center (2006)Maria Bello with Oliver Stone filming World Trade Center (2006)

    "Born to working class parents in suburban Pennsylvania, the half-Polish, half-Italian Bello attended Villanova University with the intention of becoming a lawyer. The acting bug bit during an elective course and following graduation Bello bolted for New York City, toiling in telling off-Broadway fare like The Killer Inside Me, an adaptation of the Jim Thompson pulp noir, and the blissfully Belloesque Small Town Gals with Big Problems". Source:

    Ben Stiller and Maria Bello as Jerry Stahl and Kitty in "Permanent Midnight" (1998)

    -Flavorwire: What’s been attracting you to the crime genre?

    -Jerry Stahl: The word “genre” isn’t in my vocabulary. If you read the paper, you’ll come across a lot of crime. It doesn’t get much more noir than the New York Times. I don’t really buy into the notion of ‘crime’ fiction as opposed to fiction-fiction. Crime and Punishment is about a murder — but you won’t find Dostoyevsky in the same rack as Ellroy. There’s a kind of ghettoization involved in this kind of branding, but critics love to categorize. That being said, I love Chandler".

    Maria Bello as Rosie in "Payback" (1999)

    Maria Bello and Mel Gibson as Rosie and Porter in "Payback" (1999)

    "Gibson's Porter is a show-stealer to the highest order, which is par-for-the-course since he's the sun amidst these revolving acts. His natural charisma surfaces repeatedly underneath Porter's scruff exterior, lending an air of pleasant grit as he tears through the city. Most of the supporting cast trot along with him and his velocity; however, one truly stand-out performance from Maria Bello shines amidst the darkness Porter exhumes.

    Payback jams together noir-ish grittiness with fantastically dark tongue-and-cheek humor".

    Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall inTo Have and Have Not (1944) directed by Howard Hawks

    "Raymond Chandler, whose splendid prose illuminated his novels and stories, compared his private detective to a knight, describing his as someone who walked the mean streets but was not himself mean.
    Gloria Grahame and Glenn Ford in The Big Heat (1953) directed by Fritz Lang

    Furthermore, this rather cynical figure--underpaid, disrespected, threatened, shot at, beaten up--has a code of ethics that guarantees he'll do the best he can for his client, who's probably lying to him anyway. A heroic figure stands at the center of the private eye novel; there are no heroic figures in noir fiction".

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Noir fiction and modern femme fatales

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