Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Poll Results: Narrow Win For Brooks; Gish, Dietrich A Close Second

The numbers are in on the latest Monkey Poll and the results were decidedly mixed. In answer to the question "Of the previous winners of the Katie-Bar-The-Door award for best actress in a lead role, who is your favorite?" 10 of you chose silent film star Louise Brooks, while 8 each went for Lillian Gish and Marlene Dietrich. The always controversial "Queen of MGM," Norma Shearer, picked up 7 solid votes, while "America's Sweetheart," Mary Pickford, polled 5.

In a way I wasn't surprised that Brooksie won, albeit narrowly. Of the five choices, her face is the most famous, even among people who have no idea who she was or what she did. I was in a bookstore the other day, for example, and saw her image on the cover a magazine that had nothing to do with movies whatsoever. And last Christmas, I bought a pair of earrings for Katie-Bar-The-Door from a salesclerk wearing a Louise Brooks bob. Not to mention a new edition of The Diary Of A Lost Girl prepared by film historian Thomas Gladysz, the host of the Louise Brooks Society, the best site devoted to all things Brooks.

Louise Brooks is hot, in more ways than one. Pretty good for an actress who appeared in only 23 movies, with frankly no more than half a dozen worth talking about.

"A well dressed woman, even though her purse is painfully empty," she once said, "can conquer the world." And conquer the world she did. Just not in her lifetime.

I've written about Louise Brooks extensively here.


thomas gladysz said...

Dear Mythical Monkey, thank you for the shout-out to my new "Louise Brooks edition" of THE DIARY OF A LOST GIRL.

You mentioned a magazine with Brooks on the cover. Pray tell, what was it?

Mythical Monkey said...

This is what I get for not buying the magazine when I saw it -- it was at the Barnes & Noble in Hendersonville, Tennessee, and I think it was some sort of fashion magazine, maybe a vintage fashion magazine. I'll do some research and see if I can jog my memory ...

Mythical Monkey said...

... and as I recall, they had superimposed flowers on the photo, so it was Louise Brooks with a ring of roses around her face and famous bob.

Mz. Louise Brooks said...

My dear boy.

I should like to thank you for again praising my work. Or, more correctly, praising my celebrity.

I think you're pushing it by saying half a dozen; of those released commercially, I'd say four were worth talking about.

Of course, I made a few films that, ah, weren't released commercially. In those, ducky, I soared.

Trust me.

Please thank your readers.

Thomas -- while I've largely been silent about your efforts, I would like to thank you as well. I was moved by your obvious devotion, and your insights.

If you run across the films of which I speakm please keep them to yourself.

For now, I bid you adieu.