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World's Oldest Profession in movies


casablancalover
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Well, the first movie that comes into mind for me is "Klute." Jane Fonda gives the most realistic, three-dimensional portrayal of a prostitute I've ever seen. The movie forces you to accept her as a REAL human being first and a prostitute second. This is very rare for Hollywood which usually sorts pros into two categories:

 

- Hooker With A Heart Of Gold

This is the prostitute who's not really a prostitute- she's just a good girl caught up in the wrong industry and looking for the chance to reform/redeem herself with an act of morality or the appearance of her prince. "Pretty Woman" kinda fits into this category... really good movie.

 

- Bad Girl

This is the prostitute as Evil Woman- unreedemable, ruined, etc. In more modern movies she might be a junkie... or corpse.

 

"Klute" strikes that almost-impossble balance to show you that prostitutes- like everybody else- might be a little of both types... and more. If you haven't seen it I would highly suggest it. Also Jodie Foster in "Taxi Driver" is wonderful!

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I would add Shirley Jones in Elmer Gentry.

 

As for Pretty Women being a "really good movie" I have to disagree with that. It is a corny and silly movie in my view. Yea, it is romantic but only if one forgets that the gal is a prostitute. Of course maybe that does make it a great movie; i.e. a movie that gives viewers a specific vibe (romantic), while the core of the plot is anything but.

 

 

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Klute is very good, I agree.

 

h4. Bad girl-

First one that comes to mind is Bette Davis in Of Human Bondage. I know; Mildred is a waitress and not a hooker, but by the way she behaves, I believe her job title is merely a formality.

 

h4. Misfit Toys-

Vivian Leigh in Waterloo Bridge, who starts out as a Ballerina and takes one major drop down the social ladder..

 

Claire Trevor has had a few turns on the street (at least suggested) with her characters in Dead End and Stagecoach.

 

h5. Heart of Gold-

Ona Munson as Belle Watling in GWTW. None better.

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A few other films that come to mind:

 

 

 

 

 

 

* "Virtue" (1932), where Carole Lombard plays a streetwalker who tries to reform...but her past catches up to her. Probably her best performance before "Twentieth Century," though it's a drama, not a comedy. Made at Columbia with a feel similar to Warners pre-Codes.

* "Bed Of Roses" (1933), starring Constance Bennett and wisecracking pal Pert Kelton as riverboat hookers on the Mississippi.

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In CALL HER SAVAGE, the one time that we see Clara Bow take to the streets and score, the night has disastrous consequences for her. Even in pre-code cinema, the wages of sin come with a price tag.

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>jamesjazzguitar wrote:

>As for Pretty Women being a "really good movie" I have to disagree with that. It is a corny and silly movie in my view. Yea, it is romantic but only if one forgets that the gal is a prostitute. Of course maybe that does make it a great movie; i.e. a movie that gives viewers a specific vibe (romantic), while the core of the plot is anything but.

I am with you there. Let's not get banned discussing the paradox..

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I like Mae Clarke in the original Waterloo Bridge, directed by James Whale. She's a knockout in that...much better than she was in Frankenstein or Public Enemy.

 

Also don't forget The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas, which is sheer fun and makes prostitution seem like fun. :^0

 

"It's just a little bitty pissant country place, nothing much to see

No drinking allowed, we get a nice quiet crowd, plain as it can be

It's just a piddly squatin no time country place, nothing to hide at all

Just lots of good will, and maybe one small thrill, but there's nothing dirty going on" ;)

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Also La Vie En Rose (2007, aka La Mome ), in which future singing legend Edith Piaf, as a child abandoned by her mother, is raised by a prositute in a brothel.

 

One I enjoy is Nancy Allen in Dressed To Kill (1980), as a high-class hooker with a heart of gold, who witnesses a violent murder:

"Let's cut the crap, Miss Blake...you're a ****. You're a Park Avenue ****, but you're still a ****." :8}

 

...and the terrific Kathleen Turner in Crimes of Passion (1984).

 

 

Johns (1996)... male ho's.

 

 

Twisted (1996)... male ho's variation on Oliver Twist. Good movie.

 

 

Twist (2003) ... similar concept. Oliver Twist done with male ho's.

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