The Devil is a Woman
Screen Style 2013
(Joseph von Sternberg, 1931)
Screen Style opening night!
Dress and Drink Happy Hour at 5:30pm!
Friday, Dec 13 at 07:00PM
The Devil Is A Woman is the last and most stylized of the Von Sternberg/Dietrich films. Stunning in bright black and white, it's the story of Concha Perez ("The most daaangerous woman aliiiive" drones Lionel Atwill as a bitter and broken-hearted cast-off, filling in quite nicely for Von Sternberg).
Concha begins as a poorly dressed cigarette-maker with curiously impeccable make-up and hair in 1890's-ish "Spain." Cesar Romero, handsome as a God, plays the gay young patriot enthralled with Concha after seeing her in perhaps the most intriguing Spanish-comb/pom-pom/mantilla combination ever enshrined on film.
The Travis Banton costumes for Miss Dietrich are over-the-top stunners (I have a story or two about their collaboration), and really her hair is worth mentioning againan ever-changing kaleidoscope of lace, Spanish combs, spit-curls and carnations. There are a lot of squawking, messy, flapping birds, so if you get bored waiting for Miss Dietrich to show up while the plot advances (an adaptation by John Dos Passos, but you'd never know it) those birds will give you something to think about.
Selected by the artist Mark Mitchell.
Through his work with the burlesque dancer known as Swedish Housewife and the art/rock band the Ononos and other similarly theatrically garbed performers, Seattle has known Mark Mitchell as a costumer and custom designer. But this year they met the true artist. His show Burial, at the Frye Art Museum, required him to imagine complex and thoughtful death ensembles for nine muses and then render them in biodegradable materials in shades of rich white and cream. The Seattle art community responded with such support and praise that the fashion-meets-function-meets-sculpture exhibit is being readied for transport to other citiesand perhaps continents. Mark is the subject of a short feature that recently won "Best Interview" at Hot Docs in Toronto.
Northwest Film Forum (View)
1515 12th Ave
Seattle, WA 98122