Bad girl movies
From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
"Bad girl movies" are a subcategory of film noir labeled by latter-day movie buffs to describe the dark films of the 1940s and 1950s starring bad girls: beautiful women who were usually on the wrong side of the law. The movie posters to these films usually featured sexy artwork of the lady in question, posed seductively, and these images today in original posters and reproductions are as collected today, as are the films themselves are on VHS and DVD.
Women in prison films
Perhaps the ultimate bad girl movies are women's prison films with the women in question behind bars; the majority of these films were made well after the classical film noir period and include one of the more socially-conscious films of the genre, Why Must I Die?.
Classic "bad girl" performances
- Barbara Stanwyck in Double Indemnity (1944)
- Gene Tierney in Leave Her to Heaven (1945)
- Lana Turner in The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946)
- Ann Savage in Detour (1946)
- Jane Greer in Out of the Past (1948)
- Joan Bennett in Scarlet Street (1948)
- Rita Hayworth in Gilda (1946) and The Lady from Shanghai (1948)
- Marilyn Monroe in Niagara (1953)"Don't Bother To Knock"(1952)
- Cleo Moore in One Girl's Confession (1953)
- Jane Russell in The Revolt of Mamie Stover (1956)
- Mamie Van Doren in High School Confidential (1958)
Stanwyck, Savage, Bennett, Moore and Van Doren made multiple films that fall into the "bad girl movie" category as did Ava Gardner, Gloria Grahame, Dorothy Malone, Beverly Michaels, Lizabeth Scott, Audrey Totter, Claire Trevor, Marie Windsor, and Shelley Winters.