Perfidious queens, dark ladies and assassins: at Sivori the review on the “Bad Girls” of cinema

I’m coming “Bad Girls”, the baddies of cinema of all time (and of all genres): terrible girls, wicked queens, avid vampires, dark ladies, fatal vamps, serial killers, perverse mummies, melo bastards, cold avengers, diabolical seducers, glacial assassins . Each has its place in the six lessons of the new “Bad Girls” cycle, at the Sivori cinema (salita Santa Caterina 54 r.) from 14 January to 11 March 2023, always on Saturdays at 3 pm.

Curated by Emanuela Martini, organized by FIC – Italian Cineforum Federation and Cineforum Rivista, it is hosted in Genoa by Circuito. Each meeting lasts two hours and involves the participation of scholars, teachers and film critics: Luca Malavasi, Ilaria Feole, Barbara Rossi, as well as Emanuela Martini, curator of the entire initiative. The ticket is 12 euros per meeting, 60 euros in subscription. Tickets will be available for purchase shortly at the cinema ticket offices.

It begins at 3 pm on Saturday 14 January at the Sivori cinema with Luca Malavasi, professor of film history and analysis and elements of visual culture at the University of Genoa, who talks about “Queens and Other Villains of Disney & Co.”. They are bad, sometimes very bad, but also, very often, eccentric, sensual, funny. The antagonists of the world of animation have nothing to envy, in terms of charm and popularity, to the (generally) young and beautiful they oppose. Disney, of villains, has created memorable ones, from Grimilde (Cinderella) to Ursula (The Little Mermaid), from Cruella De Vil (101 Dalmatians) to Mother Gothel (Rapunzel), but also outside the production of this studio the “stars” are countless, from the first color witch (of the West) in the history of cinema (The Wizard of Oz) to the ruthless, very sensual Catwoman, in evil movement between comics, cinema and cartoons.

The second appointment is Saturday 28 January at 3 pm with “Vampire, vamp, Marlene and fatal women” selected by Pier Maria Bocchi, scholar and film critic, editor of “Cineforum”. There has never been a female star vampire. The male imagination with sharp canines is legendary (Bela Lugosi, Christopher Lee), the female one is not. Divas lend themselves to one-off blood sucking (Delphine Seyrig, Catherine Deneuve, Grace Jones). The femme fatale and the vamp on the contrary have always conquered the center of the shot, they move the scene, they make the scene; man is afraid of them, he doesn’t want to defeat them, he wants to fall in love, so he succumbs. In this regard, there is no one in the cinema who has known how to move and make the scene like Marlene Dietrich, especially in her artistic marriage with Josef von Sternberg (7 films).

Third lesson on 4 February at 3 pm with Ilaria Feole, author of numerous film monographs and articles for the weekly Film Tv. “Noir, Rita and the dark ladies” passes from Barbara Stanwyck of “The Double Indemnity” to Carey Mulligan of “A Promising Woman”, passing through Rita Hayworth of “The Lady from Shanghai”, Catherine Deneuve of “My Drug Her Name is Julie” and Jessica Lange of “The postman always rings twice”: all the shades of black of dark ladies, fatal seducers, man-eaters and vamps, and their mutations from classic cinema to the #MeToo revolution.

“Murderers, poisoners, serial killers, avengers” is the theme chosen for the February 18 lesson by Barbara Rossi, media and film educator, vice president of the FIC (Italian Cineforum Federation). From Alex of “Fatal Attraction” to Annie of “Misery must not die”, passing through The Bride of “Kill Bill: Volume 1 and 2” up to the Alma of “The Hidden Thread”, a cinephile journey among female characters more diabolical and violent than the last thirty years, for which revenge can take many forms, but it is certainly not a dish that is eaten cold.

The last two lessons are both by Emanuela Martini, curator of the review, expert in Anglo-American cinema, director of Cineforum Rivista. Saturday February 25 talk about “Dear mums (and little sisters)”, a branch of the Bad Girls family no less rich in ideas and interesting figures. These women are not dark ladies, they do not aspire to wealth, revenge or power; they are mothers and sisters who harbor much deeper hatred and desires for control and make life impossible for the whole family. Be it for revenge (“Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?”) or for envy (“The Dark Mirror”; “Sisters”), for religious fanaticism (“Carrie, the Look of Satan”) or superiority complex (“Mommy Dearest “). However, we must not fall into error: among them there are also loving and affectionate mothers like the protagonist “La Signora ammazzatutti”, a true angel of the family who is willing to do anything for the well-being and safety of her loved ones.

Saturday 11 March the cycle of lessons ends with “Melo bastards, from Bette Davis to Lady Macbeth”. Starting from the voracious vamp of the silent era, through the numerous, wicked willful villains to which Bette Davis gave a face and temper and the unsuspected forays into the perfidy of Katharine Hepburn (“Suddenly last summer”) to arrive up to the recent Florence Pugh of “Lady Macbeth ” (frozen mélo brönte-Victorian directed in 2016 by William Oldroyd), the ladies torn apart by too much love or lack of love, by hatred or revenge, by jealousy or anger, or by pure, intimate obsession with domination have seduced more than a century of cinema .

Perfidious queens, dark ladies and assassins: at Sivori the review on the “Bad Girls” of cinema