Sunday, 28 July 2013

Babyface Nietzsche

And so, the world's first feminazi was born.... :)

No, I'm kidding. I don't really know why this (previously suppressed) scene from 1933's 'Baby Face' speaks to me so much, it just seems to touch on so many raw realities of life, outside of all ages, such as woman's unchanging power & elevated position over man, & the unvarnished venality & greed of hungry human beings.

It seems also to freeze a moment in time that would be gone almost as soon as the scene was over: once the second world war began, only a few years hence, a friendly German character stridently plugging the philosophy of Nietzsche would be unthinkable right up to pretty much the present day, tarred with its new fascist associations. And all the references to a woman using her body to manipulate men to her will would also become a thing of the past once the Hays Code was passed the following year.

This scene was never actually shown anywhere until the uncut film's discovery & restoration in 2004. In 1933 it was instead overdubbed with the following feeble propaganda:

"A woman, young, beautiful like you, can get anything she wants in the world. But there is a right way and a wrong way. Remember, the price of the wrong way is too great. Go to some big city where you will find opportunities! Don't let people mislead you. You must be a master, not a slave. Be clean, be strong, defiant, and you will be a success."

And that's the way another age, another history, another world began.

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