Saturday, October 18, 2008


Today marks the 110th anniversary of the birth of Lotte Lenya. She spent most of her career on the stage, first in Weimar Germany, and then on Broadway; as well as singing the songs of her first husband, Kurt Weill. However, later in life she made a very few movies, even receiving an Oscar nomination for The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone. However, the role for which she's probably best remembered is that of Rosa Klebb, in From Russia With Love. Klebb is a nightmarish-looking assassin who, in the great tradition of the Bond movies, has an innovative weapon -- a poison-tipped shoe.

Rosa Klebb might be the best screen villainess ever. Not far behind is the lovely but nasty Ellen Berent, played by Gene Tierney in Leave Her To Heaven. As I mentioned back in January, this woman has no compunction, watching her brother-in-law drown to death, while she sits there doing nothing; and committing suicide but staging it such that it looks as though her sister has murdered her!

Who's your favorite screen villainess?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Greatest screen villainess?

Has to be Louise Fletcher who played Nurse Rached in "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest."

She performed her evil under the guise of helping the sick, that's got to put her in first place!