Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Josephine Baker was born poor, but achieved fame and fortune through her sizzlingly exotic and erotic performances. Starting life on the American Vaudeville ... See full summary »
In a juke joint, sharecropper Zeke falls for a beautiful dancer, Chick, but she's only setting him up for a rigged craps game. He loses $100, the money he got for the sale of his family's ... See full summary »
Daniel L. Haynes,
Nina Mae McKinney,
Pierre Gilieth has committed a murder in Paris. He flees to Barcelona, where he runs out of money. So he joins the Spanish Foreign Legion. He meets there two fellow countrymen, Mulot and ... See full summary »
Iris has a dead-end job in a match-factory, lives with her dour and forbidding parents, and her social life is a disaster. But when she is made pregnant after a one-night stand by a man who... See full summary »
A short film produced in 1928 to promote the Folies Bergeres. The fireman on duty at the Folies reels out of the theatre, dazzled by all the naked women he's seen. Everywhere he looks, ... See full summary »
A couple is brutally murdered in the working-class district of Paris. Later on, the narrative follows the lives of their two daughters, both in love with a Parisian thug and leading them to separate ways.
Max de Mirecourt, celebrated French novelist, takes a vacation from his social-butterfly wife in Tunisia, where he meets beautiful Alwina, a barefoot hill shepherdess. To cure his writer's block, Max casts Alwina as heroine in a real-life 'Pygmalion' story. She reacts to civilized ways and emotions with charming simplicity. Now Max, stung by reports of his wife's affair with a dark-skinned maharajah, has the idea of launching Alwina in Paris society as a princess. Will civilization spoil her wild charms? Who will pair off with whom? Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
An advertising poster for this film is pictured on one stamp of a set of five 42¢ USA commemorative postage stamps honoring Vintage Black Cinema, issued 16 July 2008. Other films honored in this set are Black and Tan (1929), The Sport of the Gods (1921), Caldonia (1945), and Hallelujah (1929). See more »
Princess Tam Tam is without the trappings of racism, in the way we think of racism in the United States, but there are more subtle (to the American viewer) assertions about ethnic identity during the time. Pay attention to Alwina's (Baker) placement within shots, how she is addressed by the other characters, the settings around her that all depict her as a "savage" African, and ask yourself if Alwina has any shred of agency throughout the film. I don't want to ruin anything but at the end pay very careful attention, the dichotomy between "Eastern" and "Western" culture is to say the least offensive, such diction is thankfully disavowed these days. The French have a checkered past as an imperial force throughout the areas depicted (see Chris Marker's Les Statues Meurent Aussi- 1953), and pay attention to the places the European travelers visit while they are in Africa, and what does that reflect about their attitudes towards the "other". I give this film a 7 because I am a sucker for Baker, much of what she did in her professional career, like Princes Tam Tam, that is regressive is certainly overshadowed by her efforts towards integration, her work as a freaking spy (I am gushing, sorry.) However the film for me is captivating because of her performance, besides that it is a telling relic of bygone mentalities.
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