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Apr 10 2017
And Now For The Inevitable One: A Marlene Dietrich Retrospective Comments (0)

Marlene Dietrich was always one of my movie idols — her glamour and modernity in her films were utterly unique, even to the point where debating her acting seemed pointless.

Tumblr_mlae63jxsM1s1x70vo1_500(GIF via Paramount)

One of my all-time favorite films is the Maximilian Schell doc on the grande dame, Marlene (1987). In it, she refuses to be seen so offers only her gravelly voice-over as she and Schell combatively go over the details of her incredible life and career.

Now, Metrograph in NYC is planning a 19-film retrospective on Dietrich, which will include the doc as well as Rainer Werner Fassbinder's Lola, which was inspired by her.

The retrospective kicks off May 23 — I cahn't vait.

From a press release:

Beginning Tuesday May 23, Metrograph will present a 19-film retrospective of one of the most iconic screen presences, Marlene Dietrich. After performing in vaudeville in Weimar Germany, Dietrich fled to Hollywood, where her image as a brooding, bisexual sex symbol, willful camp icon, paragon of feminine glamour–comfortable in top hat and tails, ballgown, or gorilla suit–was solidified. As an ardent anti-fascist during World War II, Dietrich used her likeness to fundraise for Jewish refugees escaping Nazi Germany and performed on USO tours, earning her the Metal of Freedom and Légion d'honneur by the French government. Dietrich's legacy is as timely as ever and one worth celebrating. 

In seven collaborations with Josef von Sternberg (The Blue Angel, Morocco, Blonde Venus, Dishonored, Shanghai ExpressThe Devil Is a Woman and The Scarlet Empress), one of the great director/actress pairs of the Golden Age of Hollywood, Dietrich was never less than her inimitable, beguiling self, a prismatic personage whose many glittering facets were on full display. In films directed by Alfred Hitchcock (Stage Fright), Orson Welles (Touch of Evil), Billy Wilder (A Foreign Affair), Fritz Lang (Rancho Notorious), Frank Borzage (Desire), and Rouben Mamoulian (The Song of Songs), Dietrich was no less iconic. Additional titles include Angel, Destry Rides Again, The Lady is Willing, and Judgment at Nuremburg. R.W. Fassbinder's Lola, inspired by Dietrich, will also screen, as well as Maximilian Schell's Marlene, a documentary about the actress. All 35mm except Marlene.