Some people share their birthday with Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn or Myrna Loy, I share mine with Mata Hari. I never really knew much about her other than she was a femme fatale spy.
Last night we watched the 1931 Mata Hari movie which stars Greta Garbo.This film is loosely based on Mata Hari's life. Garbo plays such a mesmerizing version of Mata Hari that you don't really care if it's accurate or not. This movie had me gasping with amazement at some of the lavish, decadent over the top outfits that Garbo was wearing including an outfit that involved intriguing gold lame leggings or tights (you can check out a film clip featuring the ensemble on You Tube, look closely at how sensuously she closes the curtains towards the end of the clip [Garbo's gowns were designed by Adrian]). Greta Garbo's beauty and talent shine in this movie.
Speaking of the beauty of Garbo, I was lucky enough to come across an incredible hardback book titled Four Fabulous Faces, which contains tons of photos of Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich, Joan Crawford and Gloria Swanson. I have only just begun ogling this weighty tome, and so far it proves to be fascinating.
For any Silver Screen and Old Hollywood fan I would most definitely recommend watching Mata Hari and reading Four Fabulous Faces.
This post was originally published on April 14, 2009.