Marlene Dietrich: Life and Legend
Last updated: 17.12.19
||Da Capo Press
Paperback: 672 pages, usually ships within 24 hours.
From Publishers Weekly
This massive, admiring biography refutes the notion that Marlene Dietrich's femme fatale image
was wholly the invention of director Josef von Sternberg. Bach, a film producer and author of
Final Cut, who studied with von Sternberg, portrays the latter as a megalomaniac whose
amorous frustrations with the star he had created drove him to maintain that she was a puppet
who danced to his strings. Bach rejects the standard comparisons with Garbo as he plumbs
Dietrich's special blend of erotic power, irony and humor and limns a strong-willed woman
whose innumerable sexual affairs satisfied a simple need for companionship. He divulges that
Dietrich's sister Elisabeth, whose existence the actress denied, belonged, with Elisabeth's
husband, to a group that entertained Nazis at Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. Strong on film
and stage criticism but less intimately revealing than Donald Spoto's Blue Angel (Forecasts, July
13), this engrossing biography is especially good on Dietrich's early career, her valiant anti-Nazi
efforts and her phoenixlike rebirth as a troubadour-actress. More than 100 photos, a filmography and a discography will also please fans. Author tour.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information,
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