Blonde Venus

  • Dir: Josef von Sternberg

  • USA, 1932, 94 minmins, DCP

  • Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Cary Grant, Herbert Marshall

A loving wife and mother, an immoral hedonist, or simply a woman struggling to be free? A melodrama of a housewife sinking into depravity before recovering her virtue is merely a strategy for Austrian director Josef von Sternberg to mythologize Marlene Dietrich’s persona with his fascinating mise-en-scène. A cynical refraction of Dietrich’s transcontinental experience, Blonde Venus conjures a frenzied, elusive world of passions and desires that overcomes strict realism, with an intuitive compass that challenges the ideals of female chastity and domesticity – and the moralistic admonitions of Hays Code. A visual and ideological triumph that conquers all with the bewitching charm of the legendary “Hot Voodoo” number.

30/11 (SAT): Film talk with Fiona Law


    In-theatre Screening


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