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20 September 2011

Dietrich vs. Garbo



Even before she arrived in the US, Dietrich was being compared with Garbo by critics; today, the two are still compared. In 1938, Photoplay compared the two and declared Garbo the "winnah!". What's your take on these endless comparisons between the two?

8 comments:

  1. It was perhaps when I saw Garbo dance in "Mata Hari" that I realized Dietrich was the real "winnah," hands down. Garbo had a wonderful face (but did not look very alluring at all when she smiled broadly) and presence. But her presence seems dated today in comparison to that of Dietrich. Additionally, Garbo did not have much of a figure where Dietrich had much more than a pair of famous legs. Garbo fled the screen in her prime and became elusive - which enhanced her mystique enormously. Dietrich remained in the spotlight, reinvented herself and created an entirely different sort of career and legend. For me, no contest...

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  2. I think of it mostly as studio-generated hype: Dietrich as Paramount's Garbo and the intentional similarities of some of their 1930s publicity photos.

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  3. Garbo was beautiful but for some unknown reason, did not hold much appeal to me. Dietrich on the other hand, the more I knew and dug, the more interesting she became.

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  4. Garbo doesn't appeal to me as much as to some others. Gorgeous, perfect face, but she always seemed so somber, so removed.
    Dietrich,conversely her hands in everything (big glamorous social life, lots of friends and lovers, war effort, later cabaret career and films--and she should have at least gotten an Oscar for Witness For The Prosecution!

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  5. There really is a kind of sameness to Garbo's performances where as MD showed a great range even in just the von Sternberg films. Some of Garbo's performances seem dated while Md is very natural and modern in hers.MD showed such courage and kindness during the war that she greatly outdistanced her rivals.I also see MD referred to far more often in pop culture and fashion more than Garbo.

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  6. Garbo was divine and a much greater actress; Dietrich was more glamourous and became a good actress. I loved them both, but was surprised to see some peeps didn't find Dietrich a bit outdated with those fake eyebrows and lashes.

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  7. From the late '40s onward, Dietrich at least penciled her brows in more thickly, never letting them ascend again to Desire heights. I did wonder whether people in the '70s found that wig style during her cabaret career dated, but I imagine that the look helped audiences pretend they were stepping back in time. Sometimes, I wish Madonna would pull a similar tactic by letting her roots grow out a few inches and tying pantyhose around her head.

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