It's not easy to be a little bit ruffled yet totally chilled out.
This photo of Japanese actress Reiko Ohara in an amazing ruffled two-piece something-or-other stands in stark contrast to the last time we saw her, when she was brandishing a pistol almost as big as her forearm. Given a choice, we prefer her summer look, but on the other hand what's more pulp than a woman with a gun? You can judge for yourself here.
This version is for adults only.
Like most burlesque dancers Noel Toy had several nicknames and alter egos, including the Chinese Sally Rand, but this promo image is signed: Ming Toi – The Silver Goddess. Toy/Toi was actually born Ngun Lee in San Francisco in 1918, and was a journalism student at UC Berkeley when she took a job dancing during the Golden Gate International Exposition, a Bay Area version of the World's Fair held in 1939. Having tasted the bright lights of show business, Toy ditched university and took a job at the famed Frisco club Forbidden City, developing a fan dance that brought about the Rand comparison. As her star rose she performed at many of the top clubs around the U.S., including the Stork Club in New York City. In 1951 she made the leap to cinema with an uncredited role in Anne of the Indies, and thereafter acted mostly on television shows, including Columbo, Police Woman, and four episodes of M*A*S*H*. We don't have an exact date for this rare and awesome Silver Goddess shot (yes, we know she looks more like gold, but who are we argue with her self-chosen nickname?), however it's probably from around 1940. A couple more images appear below.
I've got everything a growing boy needs.
This photo shows a favorite actress of ours—Yorkshire-born British beauty Kay Kendall, looking more than a bit come-hither here. She had a short career, owing to an unfortunate early death, however her movies are well worth watching, particularly the comedic romp Genevieve, the titular star of which is a 1904 Darracq. That's a car, and the movie is about an automobile rally, though it's Kendall who steals the show.
She was legendarily a central figure in one of those old school Hollywood dust-ups we love learning about. It involved one man slapping another. Sound familiar? It didn't happen during the Academy Awards ceremony, but still, it was one for the books, as it involved Rex Harrison and Frank Sinatra. We wrote about it here. Kendall is remembered today for being a brilliant comic actress, but this photo was made for her 1953 thriller Man in Hiding.
I've come to think of you as more than just the anonymous voice that takes my pizza orders. By chance are you single?
Above: a noirish photo of U.S. actress Anne Francis made when she was filming the drama Girl of the Night in 1960, which is a movie we'll get to a bit later. It's her third appearance as a femme fatale on our website. Those are all good shots, but our favorite is not a femme fatale photo—it's the one we put up when Leslie Nielsen died. You can see it here.
Hi, I'm just a typical smalltown wife and I have nothing murderous on my mind at all.
This photo shows the moment Lana Turner makes her screen entrance in the 1946 film noir The Postman Always Rings Twice, and as noir fans know, when the light hits an actress and glows in that special way trouble soon follows. Reviews of the film glowed too, and Turner went from star to supernova. If you haven't seen Postman you really should. For that matter, you should probably read the book.
Ocean temperatures rose sharply on a random day in 1974. Scientific explanation finally found.
Andrea Rau joins the Pulp Intl. swim team with this nice photo that appeared in the British magazine Cinema X in 1974. Rau, whose hotness we've already documented and who probably sent up a cloud of steam whenever she jumped into water, is also a member of the Pulp Intl. soap foam team, which means she's doing double duty. But she's German, so her work ethic is off the charts. You'll be seeing more of her later.
The next few rounds are on her.
It's always fun until someone sprays gunfire around the bar. Above you see a promo image of British actress Virginia Field made for her 1950 film noir Dial 1119. This would be a controversial photo for an actress today, and understandably so, for reasons that regularly make headlines. We shared another promo of Field from Dial 1119 a long while back, which you can see here.
Where Elke is concerned a cigar is never just a cigar.
You know the famous quote attributed to Sigmund Freud, right? He's sometimes criticized for having seen phallic symbols and sexual subtext where they didn't exist, but apparently he once said, “Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.” But not in this case. In 1967's Deadlier Than the Male, Elke Sommer's cigar is an explosive she uses to assassinate someone, blowing his airplane out of the sky as she parachutes safely to the ground. It's a cheeseball movie, but her turn as the ultimate femme fatale makes it worth watching. You can read more about it here, and see plenty more Elke here, there, and everywhere.
It doesn't show on my face but I'm enjoying this immensely.
Jane Greer and guns. There are quite a few photos of her armed. This one was made when she was filming Out of the Past, but it doesn't depict the iconic moment when she shot Steve Brodie. She shot him from the front door. Here she's by the fireplace, about where Brodie was when she ventilated him. So we guess RKO Radio Pictures made an entire set of Greer with a gun, complete with wardrobe changes. She looks good in all of them. See her armed and dangerous in three production photos—two from Out of the Past and one from The Big Steal—here, here, and here.
Flower care instructions: give plenty of light, keep warm, water daily.
It's been a few years since we last saw Japanese pinku actress Meg Flower, but we're revisiting her today because, like many female action stars of her era, she has astounding promo photos. Add this one to the list, as we continue to swim against the tide of new Puritanism by sharing beautiful nudes. As we've mentioned before, sex is the motivational drive for protagonists from the earliest pulp literature up to and through every generation of crime, noir, and action films. Pinku movies, particularly those from Toei Company's pinky violence cycle, were the apotheosis of Japanese action cinema and tore the veil from what had previously only been hinted at. Photographed by Kenji Nagatomo, this shot was published in a couple of places, but it originated as a foldout inside Flower's 1971 album Sasayaki Tameiki Modae, aka Whisper Sigh Mood. Indeed. There's a song on it called, “Last Dance to Me,” but you can be sure this isn't our last dance with Meg. To see more images of her click here and here. |
The headlines that mattered yesteryear.
1934—Bonnie and Clyde Are Shot To Death
Outlaws Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, who traveled the central United States during the Great Depression robbing banks, stores and gas stations, are ambushed and shot to death in Louisiana by a posse of six law officers. Officially, the autopsy report lists seventeen separate entrance wounds on Barrow and twenty-six on Parker, including several head shots on each. So numerous are the bullet holes that an undertaker claims to have difficulty embalming the bodies because they won't hold the embalming fluid.
1942—Ted Williams Enlists
Baseball player Ted Williams of the Boston Red Sox enlists in the United States Marine Corps, where he undergoes flight training and eventually serves as a flight instructor in Pensacola, Florida. The years he lost to World War II (and later another year to the Korean War) considerably diminished his career baseball statistics, but even so, he is indisputably one of greatest players in the history of the sport.
1924—Leopold and Loeb Murder Bobby Franks
Two wealthy University of Chicago students named Richard Loeb and Nathan Leopold, Jr. murder 14-year-old Bobby Franks, motivated by no other reason than to prove their intellectual superiority by committing a perfect crime. But the duo are caught and sentenced to life in prison. Their crime becomes known as a "thrill killing", and their story later inspires various works of art, including the 1929 play Rope by Patrick Hamilton, and Alfred Hitchcock's 1948 film of the same name.
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