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Male characters (real and fictional)

Cover of Superman #14
image sourced here.

Related: actress - character - fiction - stereotype

Characters and stereotypes: Adam - devil - Casanova - Dracula - Fantômas - father - god - hero - incubus - macho (alpha male) - Nosferatu - Frankenstein's monster - playboy - Harry Potter - Satanik - satyr - villain

List of men: Andreas Baader - Caligula - Clyde (of Bonnie and Clyde) - Adolf Hitler - Charles Manson - Fakir Musafar - Gilles de Rais - Jack the Ripper - Marquis de Sade

List of male actors: Paul Bartel - Michel Blanc - Dirk Bogarde - Lon Chaney - Joe Dallesandro - Gérard Depardieu - Bruce Dern - Patrick Dewaere - Clint Eastwood - Klaus Kinski - Marcello Mastroianni - Jack Nicholson - Sean Penn - James Woods

Klaus Kinski

Joe Dallesandro, photo credit unidentified


An actor is a person who acts, or plays a role in an artistic production. The term commonly refers to someone working in movies, television, live theatre, or radio, and can occasionally denote a street entertainer. Besides playing dramatic roles, actors may also sing or dance or work only on radio or as a voice artist. A female actor is an actress, although an increasingly large group feel that the term "actor" should be redefined as being gender-neutral and used for both men and women. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Actor [Dec 2004]

Prince Charming

Prince Charming is a stock character who originates in a number of fairy tales. He is the prince who comes to the rescue of the damsel in distress, and typically must engage in a quest to liberate her from an evil spell. The name has been given to the heroes of a number of traditional folk tales, including Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, and Cinderella.

Prince Charming is typically a well groomed adolescent. He frequently wears a sash or ribbon around his princely uniform, and often sports a small, waxed moustache. In many depictions he speaks with a French or British accent. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prince_Charming [Aug 2006]


Maciste all'inferno (1962) - Riccardo Freda
image sourced here.

Movie stardom and the sexual revolution [...]

Beautiful women and extremely handsome men were rigorously selected to become movie stars and when they were cast in movies with romantic scenes of love, kissing, hugging, and flirting, an entire culture was transformed as it became more acceptable to show feelings of affection in public. The very conservative mood leading up to the twentieth century gave way to a growing erotic milieu as popularized by the movie industry emanating from the studios of places like Hollywood.

Nudity on screen was at first rare. But with the passage of time people became more tolerant of partial nudity for men and the display of female actress's breasts, at first to adult audiences, and later to more general ones. The invention of television made it possible for scenes of love and romance to be broadcast into any home with a "TV". A whole genre of actors who were particularly well-endowed with charisma and “sex appeal" arose. Thus an entire culture arose which was steeped in and eroticized by movie and TV culture, far removed from the more inhibiting times of an "old fashioned" morality rooted in "Bible-thumping" religion.

Famous names in entertainment became not just "stars" but also "goddesses". Beautiful women such as Marilyn Monroe, Raquel Welch, Brigitte Bardot, Jane Fonda, Sophia Loren, Madonna and later young imitators, were explicit in casting a sexual aura about themselves as actresses and to the celebrity-hungry media. A love scene in every movie was accepted as the norm. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexual_revolution [Oct 2004]

Cult Movie Stars (1991) - Danny Peary [...]

Cult Movies Stars - Danny Peary [Amazon.com]

Cult Movie Stars sounds like a publisher's idea for a follow-up to Peary's best known books, but if it isn't in the same league as those, it's certainly worth owning. Peary deals with 750 performers, ranging from major stars like Dietrich, Davis and Bogart, to horror actors, skin-flick starlets and even British comedians (at last an American book which recognises the Sid James phenomenon, even if it does mistakenly say he was in Carry On Nurse). Certainly one can quibble about the selection criteria (De Niro is included but not Pacino; I looked in vain for Mariana Hill; and to bring the book up to date, perhaps the likes of Winona Ryder and Christian Slater should have been present) - but that would be to miss the point. This does not attempt to be a definitive reference book but an appealing dip into the world of cult stars - hence there is no attempt to provide complete filmographies, just a smattering of the stars' most interesting output.

Peary writes: ‘My intention is to get movie fans to seek out particular stars and show why others are so devoted to them.’ His mini-essays succeed at this, communicating a real enthusiasm for cultural icons and obscure exploitation stars alike. His criticism is concise and full of insight - and he has a talent for useful subjective writing. Of Natalie Wood, he writes: ‘It's such a relief when Santa gets her the home she dreams about in Miracle on 34th Street, when James Dean loves her in Rebel Without a Cause ...I just wish someone was there for her in Splendor in the Grass. She was my favourite actress and, like many, I get chills when, in that picture, she almost drowns.’
Darren Slade

[Book that got me started in being interested in offbeat cinema: About movie stars and their films who developed a cult audience. Riveting read. Limited availability.]

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