Monday 9 May – Saturday 14 May 2016, 8.30pm
Style Icons, Acting Trailblazers, Legendary Beauties
World Movies Screen Sirens celebrates the iconic women of international cinema. Whether they’re fresh-faced starlets, beautiful bombshells or classic femme fatales, famous women have defined international cinema for decades. World Movies has compiled the definitive list and is asking viewers to vote for their favourite.
Online voting will determine the order of the 10 films which made these leading ladies famous, screened over one femme fatale-filled week. The countdown will start Monday 9 May 8:30pm, and run throughout the week with two movies a night, culminating in a marathon on the Saturday from 8.30am.
The sirens (in alphabetical order) and their respective films include:
One of the true icons of pop culture, Brigitte Bardot was at the height of her beauty and iconic status in Jean Luc Godard’s Contempt.
The story centers on a screenwriter in the middle of his first big movie shoot, his gorgeous wife – played by Bardot – and the shady film producer who comes between them.
Belle De Jour
Deneuve plays the prim young wife of a respectable surgeon who, not satisfied with married life, takes on a part-time job in the sort of establishment most of her peers would find unsavoury. Heralded by many critics as the performance of her career, it has been suggested that Denueve’s natural ice queen demeanour is what made her perfect for the part.
Labelled by critics as the “new Bardot” Ludivine Sagnier gives a stellar performance in Francois Ozon’s suspense thriller Swimming Pool. She’s the hot French intensity to co-star Charlotte Rampling’s cool no-nonsense Britishness.
How Much Do You Love Me?
She began her career as a model and she became a Bond girl at age 51. Like a fine wine, Monica Belluci gets better with age. She often plays the kind of woman who drives men to distraction and the weak-hearted chap in this film is no exception.
Sex & Lucia
Back in 2002 the BBC called Sex & Lucia “an intoxicating experience” and that is in no small part thanks to Paz Vega. Vega plays Lucia, a reckless and obsessive waitress who stalks her favourite author and convinces him he can’t live without her.
In her 4th collaboration with Pedro Almodóvar, Cruz plays a call girl-turned-actress whose desperate need calls for desperate measures. Crammed with passion, plot twists and lies, Broken Embraces is like a pop art coloured melodrama with a large dose of Hitchcock thrown in for good measure.
Marriage Italian Style
She’s been on countless “world’s most beautiful” lists and says she owes her figure to spaghetti, but for the woman who turned down the role of Barbarella, her career hasn’t just been about her looks. In this role she earned her second of what would become a record holding six David di Donatello Awards for Best Actress.
Farewell, My Queen
She’s won the top prize at Cannes, saved the world alongside James Bond and Ethan Hunt, but in Farewell, My Queen Léa Seydoux plays the personal reader to glamorous, hedonistic and ill-fated Marie Antoinette. Serving her queen with absolute devotion, her loyalty just might turn out to be the nail in her coffin.
Scarlett Johansson, like many greats before her, became Woody Allen’s muse for a while and in Match Point you can see why Allen loves to point the camera her way. Scarlett was nominated for a Golden Globe for her portrayal in Match Point of a struggling young American actress who becomes the obsession of a young Irish hustler.
The delicate Dutch beauty who became hugely famous in the 70s for her titillating films, Sylvia Kristel stars in the erotic French classic Emmanuelle.
World Movies Screen Sirens starts Monday 9 May, 8.30pm AEST