Oh Mayann, why don’t you appreciate this beautiful gesture?

It would make more sense for Falco to refer to any of the great Italian film divas of the era*, but I figured that they are less known to the average reader (as un-average as Goldenbird’s readers are – I don’t want you to think I’m under-estimating you!) as the first great vamp of silent Hollywood, who played a scandalous Cleopatra in 1917. Unfortunately, that film is now lost – only a few seconds of footage survive.

*) Some Italian actresses that played complicated femme fatales: Pina Menichelli, Lyda Borelli, Francesca Bertini. There were so many of them! In fact, French writer Colette’s 1918 definition of a femme fatale is heavily indebted to these Italian actresses, including their outrageous fashions: draped velvet dresses, bird hats, pearl necklaces down to her knees … Here are some lovely gifs of Pina Menichelli in action, including the famous rose-eating scene!