Femme fatale literally means “fatal woman” in French. According to the movie Mildred Pierce, it can be defined as “the kind of woman men want…but shouldn’t have!”. Femme fatales dressed to kill in dark clothes, either cocktail dresses, evening gowns or pencil dresses and fitted suits. Often finished with furs, veiled hats and always with killer heels.
The Big Sleep’s Vivian Rutledge wears a seductive mix of long sweeping gowns(some with very low necklines), sharp fitted suits and the ultimate accessory of the femme fatale, the pill box hat.
Sunset Boulevard’s Norma Desmond had one of the finest femme fatale wardrobes. A faded silent movie whose fashion and makeup has the uber dramatic quality needed for silent films but with added 50s glamour. Sweeping ball gowns with chiffon, sparkling jackets, furs and diamonds were perfect femme fatale staples. With long evening gloves, veiled hats and leopard print as the perfect accessories.
Gilda lights up the screen and sashays across the screen in the most opulent, dramatic gowns that screamed 40s Hollywood glamour and ultimate femme fatale.
Gene Tierney, Laura
Claire Trevor, Murder my Sweet
Ava Gardner, The Killers
Vernonica Lake, This Gun for Hire
Peggy Cummins, Gun Crazy
Jane Greer , Out of The Past
Lana Turner, The Postman Always Rings Twice