Gilda (1946): Gay Reading of Romantic Couples and Triangles (Rita Hayworth, Glenn Ford, George Macready, Cane)–Homosexuality and Phallic Imagery

Viewed from a contemporary or modernist perspective, Charles Vidor’s Gilda, made in 1946, is a significant erotic film, and a classic film noir. Among many merits, it boasts spectacular performances from Rita Hayworth and Glenn Ford, showing the stars at their most glamorous and seductive.

The original story of Charles Vidor’s Gilda was specifically written by Virginia Van Upp, who was assigned by Columbia’s top honcho, Harry Cohn, to create a vehicle for his favorite star, and also to oversee the production.

Our Grade: A- (**** 1/2 out of *****)










The film deals with many taboo issues, both implicitly and explicitly, prime among which is repressed sexuality.

In many ways, the movie has gained its fame, cult status, and notoriety, due to its erotic and sexual entertainment values, dwelling on the themes of yearning, desire, and the desire to desire.

As a result, this feature has often been called “perverse,” what with its touches of sadomasochism and a byzantine-like plot, which spirals in many directions and is never predictable.  Gilda in fact revealed sexual repression and perversion (by standards of the time) of various sorts. At the time of its release, Gilda increased awareness in its viewers (male and viewers) of sexual mores and codes and practices that had been previously unheard of.

In particular, Hayworth’s portrayal of Gilda as a sexually aggressive, dangerous, vampire-like female offered a new twist on the more conventional Hollywood mode of the ways women heroines were presented.  The New York Times conservative critic Bosley Crowther dismissed the film and its star as being “crude.”

gilda_15_hayworthFurthermore, the two male leads, played by Glenn Ford and George Macready, have an extremely close relationship–an intimate bond–manifest in their words, gestures. and the way they look at each other, which today appears to be nothing short of latently homosexual.

Consider the first exchange of words between the older businessman Ballin and the younger pretty boy Johnny Farrell, whom he rescues late one night, while cruising the streets.

Later on, when Ballin describes his cane, which he points at Johnny, he might as well be talking about his penis.

Ballin: It is a faithful and obedient friend, it is silent when I wish to be silent, it talks when I wish to talk.
Johnny: That’s your idea of a friend?
B: That is my idea of a friend.
J: You must lead a gay life.
B: I lead a life I’d like to lead

The use of the word gay is particularly interesting, as in the 1940s it did not denote homosexual man or homosexual lifestyle; it entered our popular vernacular in the 1960s.

Throughout the plot, especially in its first part, Johnny is described as “a boy,” a nickname used by many men in the gay sub-culture, when referring to the distinction between “a real man” and “a boy,” usually a younger sexy male (an object of desire), often engaged in a relationship with older, more masculine men (the expression of “daddy’s boy” is also relevant here).

Later on, at the casino, Ballin, accompanied by his wife Gilda and Johnny, proposes a toast for “the three of us.”  When Gilda asks who’s the third friend, “is it a him or a her,” Johnny says, “it’s a her, because it looks like one thing and then right in front of your eyes, it becomes another thing.”

We wonder, what exactly is he talking about? Is he a misogynist who’s describing the ever-shifting, unreliable nature of women such as Gilda? Could it be that Johnny (subconsciously) implies that Ballin’s friend is like a penis, an organ that’s usually loose and flaccid form, but under excitement while getting an injection of blood, the penis changes forms by getting bigger, sharper, and erect?

These aspects of the film introduced viewers to new sexual worlds, in a stylish mode, and later on, an element of camp was added by more sophisticated viewers who were reading between the lines. In other words, what for some audiences is the film’s real subtext (potentially there to be unveiled), for others it might be more explicit, on the textual level itself.

The young Glenn Ford was not only very attractive but also had a boyish voice.  In Gilda, he is referred to as a “pretty” (not handsome) boy; pretty is usually used to describe girls and women not boys or men.

Consider the scene in which Johnny’s striped gown is contrasted with Mundson’s long black robe. “How pretty you look in your night gown,” Gilda comments, unmanning Johnny for the second time as “pretty.”

Gilda is also significant, because the film presented a new, more liberated sexual world, which existed amid the more pervasive sexual repression and bourgeois domesticity of the 1940s. The movie was made just after WWII, in a year in which the film that swept all the Oscar Awards was William Wyler’s The Best Years of Our Lives.

Subsequently, Rita Hayworth became the decade’s greatest pin-up girl, perhaps the first real one to follow Jean Harlow, a sex symbol in the 1930s, who died very young.  Hayworth would be replaced as a sex goddess by the blond and voluptuous Marilyn Monroe.  Of all three femmes, I thing Hayworth is the most interesting, partly because of her being a symbol of the dichotomy between sexual imagination and sexual realities.

gilda_2_hayworthWhen the U.S. Air Force sought a name for the Bikini atomic bomb, they appropriately chose “Gilda.” The analogy between an atomic bomb and a dangerous female was clearly made by the Air Force in this way. The name “Gilda” came to signify a wild woman. Also, as the film was in many ways a played off of Casablanca’s sexually repressed plot, it was as if Gilda uncovered and revealed the full sexual implications of that earlier beloved film (1942). Rita Hayworth’s sexy performance also revealed the true nature of Ingrid Bergman’s role in Casablanca.

Through Hayworth’s performance, many female viewers were made aware of their inherent rights as women, long before the feminist implications which prevail in the 1991 female buddy movie, Thelma and Louise, starring Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis.

One way Gilda achieved this effect was through the songs “Amada Mio” and “Put the Blame on Mame,” which Hayworth “sang” (she was actually dubbed) in the film. “Put the Blame on Mame” became especially popular. The lyrics of this song are about a woman much like Gilda, a woman who has been used and abused by men but comes to the realization that she does not have to put up with it anymore. The expression, in song lyrics, of Gilda’s determination to stand up against male repression, might have had an even much greater impact than the film’s dialogue.

Gilda also contributed to the creation of camp culture. The movie might have been misunderstood upon its release because it was the first full-fledged camp film. Of course, campiness and self-reflection have since become widely accepted by Hollywood. For instance, no one would be shocked by a parody of Casablanca in this day and age. However, audiences in 1946 were uncertain about what Gilda was all about. Gilda set in motion an important part of popular culture that we take for granted now: on screen campiness. Just count the number of times that both Johnny and Gilda say how much they hate each other.  Hate for the other, of course, conceals self-hatred, self-contempt, and self-degradation.

gilda_8_hayworthThe film ends with Gilda’s sexual reformation, and dismissal of the homoerotic inferences in the earlier relationship between Johnny and Ballin. As the film was released in 1946 soon after World War II had ended and just as the Cold War was gaining momentum, it was important that Hollywood portray Americans as “normal” people, and Gilda’s independence had to be domesticated. However, the film’s sudden “happy ending” could not utterly obscure the sexual issues that the film had raised earlier in the narrative.

At the time, Gilda both defined and reflected the prevalent type of woman in film noir, the “femme fatale,” alluring, dangerous and destructive.  Director Charles Vidor seems to have capitalized on the sadomasochistic angles of the genre.  In the course of the film, Johnny exerts a series of punishments on Gilda, forbidding her to dance with other men, smacking and slapping her, treating her as “a piece of dirty laundry” that needs to be picked up and then dropped. Later on, Johnny weds Gilda just in order to possess her emotionally and mentally and isolate her physically (locking her up in a sexless bond), forcing her into exile, making her beg on her knees to let her go, let her regain her freedom. To be sure, in punishing Gilda, Johnny begins as a sadomasochist who ultimately ends up as a masochist, the very victim of his behavior.

In one of the film’s most powerful scenes, Johnny begs Gilda to forgive him, “I’ve been wrong, take me back.” The film goes out of its way to reclaim the prodigal son in order to appeal to mainstream audiences.

The voyeuristic elements are prevalent throughout the tale, as when Gilda asks for help to unzip her tight dress, claiming “I’ve never been good with zippers.”  And they are most obvious in the striptease scene that Hayworth performs in a sleazy nightclub, mostly populated by older predatory men. She is wearing a notoriously revealing strapless black satin evening gown, along with matching elbow-length black gloves, which she slowly takes off and throws at the cheering audience.  Costume designer Jean Louis later said that Hayworth’s gown in Gilda was “the most famous dress I ever made.”

The shooting process was troubled due to various reasons, such as casting Glenn Ford late in the game.  There were also disagreements over the specific places in the story in which to insert choreographer Cole’s seductive dances.  Cole claimed that the inspiration for his lavish dances for Rita Hayworth derived from first-hand knowledge of famous strippers in Hollywood.

Hayworth, the reigning queen of Columbia, became Hollywood’s most popular sex goddess of the 1940s and early 1950s.  Curiously, when Hayworth experienced marital problems with Aly Khan, she blamed Van Upp, claiming: “It’s all your fault.  You wrote Gilda, and every man I’ve known has fallen in love with Gilda and waken with me!”



Rita Hayworth as Gilda Mundson Farrell
Glenn Ford as Johnny Farrell
George Macready as Ballin Mundson
Joseph Calleia as Det. Maurice Obregon
Steven Geray as Uncle Pio
Joe Sawyer as Casey
Gerald Mohr as Capt. Delgado
Mark Roberts as Gabe Evans
Ludwig Donath as German
Don Douglas as Thomas Langford
Lionel Royce as German
George J. Lewis as Huerta


xosotin chelseathông tin chuyển nhượngcâu lạc bộ bóng đá arsenalbóng đá atalantabundesligacầu thủ haalandUEFAevertonxosokeonhacaiketquabongdalichthidau7m.newskqbdtysokeobongdabongdalufutebol ao vivofutemaxmulticanaisonbetbsport.fitonbet88.oooi9bet.bizhi88.ooookvip.atf8bet.atfb88.cashvn88.cashshbet.atbóng đá world cupbóng đá inter milantin juventusbenzemala ligaclb leicester cityMUman citymessi lionelsalahnapolineymarpsgronaldoserie atottenhamvalenciaAS ROMALeverkusenac milanmbappenapolinewcastleaston villaliverpoolfa cupreal madridpremier leagueAjaxbao bong da247EPLbarcelonabournemouthaff cupasean footballbên lề sân cỏbáo bóng đá mớibóng đá cúp thế giớitin bóng đá ViệtUEFAbáo bóng đá việt namHuyền thoại bóng đágiải ngoại hạng anhSeagametap chi bong da the gioitin bong da lutrận đấu hôm nayviệt nam bóng đátin nong bong daBóng đá nữthể thao 7m24h bóng đábóng đá hôm naythe thao ngoai hang anhtin nhanh bóng đáphòng thay đồ bóng đábóng đá phủikèo nhà cái onbetbóng đá lu 2thông tin phòng thay đồthe thao vuaapp đánh lô đềdudoanxosoxổ số giải đặc biệthôm nay xổ sốkèo đẹp hôm nayketquaxosokq xskqxsmnsoi cầu ba miềnsoi cau thong kesxkt hôm naythế giới xổ sốxổ số 24hxo.soxoso3mienxo so ba mienxoso dac bietxosodientoanxổ số dự đoánvé số chiều xổxoso ket quaxosokienthietxoso kq hôm nayxoso ktxổ số megaxổ số mới nhất hôm nayxoso truc tiepxoso ViệtSX3MIENxs dự đoánxs mien bac hom nayxs miên namxsmientrungxsmn thu 7con số may mắn hôm nayKQXS 3 miền Bắc Trung Nam Nhanhdự đoán xổ số 3 miềndò vé sốdu doan xo so hom nayket qua xo xoket qua xo so.vntrúng thưởng xo sokq xoso trực tiếpket qua xskqxs 247số miền nams0x0 mienbacxosobamien hôm naysố đẹp hôm naysố đẹp trực tuyếnnuôi số đẹpxo so hom quaxoso ketquaxstruc tiep hom nayxổ số kiến thiết trực tiếpxổ số kq hôm nayso xo kq trực tuyenkết quả xổ số miền bắc trực tiếpxo so miền namxổ số miền nam trực tiếptrực tiếp xổ số hôm nayket wa xsKQ XOSOxoso onlinexo so truc tiep hom nayxsttso mien bac trong ngàyKQXS3Msố so mien bacdu doan xo so onlinedu doan cau loxổ số kenokqxs vnKQXOSOKQXS hôm naytrực tiếp kết quả xổ số ba miềncap lo dep nhat hom naysoi cầu chuẩn hôm nayso ket qua xo soXem kết quả xổ số nhanh nhấtSX3MIENXSMB chủ nhậtKQXSMNkết quả mở giải trực tuyếnGiờ vàng chốt số OnlineĐánh Đề Con Gìdò số miền namdò vé số hôm nayso mo so debach thủ lô đẹp nhất hôm naycầu đề hôm naykết quả xổ số kiến thiết toàn quốccau dep 88xsmb rong bach kimket qua xs 2023dự đoán xổ số hàng ngàyBạch thủ đề miền BắcSoi Cầu MB thần tàisoi cau vip 247soi cầu tốtsoi cầu miễn phísoi cau mb vipxsmb hom nayxs vietlottxsmn hôm naycầu lô đẹpthống kê lô kép xổ số miền Bắcquay thử xsmnxổ số thần tàiQuay thử XSMTxổ số chiều nayxo so mien nam hom nayweb đánh lô đề trực tuyến uy tínKQXS hôm nayxsmb ngày hôm nayXSMT chủ nhậtxổ số Power 6/55KQXS A trúng roycao thủ chốt sốbảng xổ số đặc biệtsoi cầu 247 vipsoi cầu wap 666Soi cầu miễn phí 888 VIPSoi Cau Chuan MBđộc thủ desố miền bắcthần tài cho sốKết quả xổ số thần tàiXem trực tiếp xổ sốXIN SỐ THẦN TÀI THỔ ĐỊACầu lô số đẹplô đẹp vip 24hsoi cầu miễn phí 888xổ số kiến thiết chiều nayXSMN thứ 7 hàng tuầnKết quả Xổ số Hồ Chí Minhnhà cái xổ số Việt NamXổ Số Đại PhátXổ số mới nhất Hôm Nayso xo mb hom nayxxmb88quay thu mbXo so Minh ChinhXS Minh Ngọc trực tiếp hôm nayXSMN 88XSTDxs than taixổ số UY TIN NHẤTxs vietlott 88SOI CẦU SIÊU CHUẨNSoiCauVietlô đẹp hôm nay vipket qua so xo hom naykqxsmb 30 ngàydự đoán xổ số 3 miềnSoi cầu 3 càng chuẩn xácbạch thủ lônuoi lo chuanbắt lô chuẩn theo ngàykq xo-solô 3 càngnuôi lô đề siêu vipcầu Lô Xiên XSMBđề về bao nhiêuSoi cầu x3xổ số kiến thiết ngày hôm nayquay thử xsmttruc tiep kết quả sxmntrực tiếp miền bắckết quả xổ số chấm vnbảng xs đặc biệt năm 2023soi cau xsmbxổ số hà nội hôm naysxmtxsmt hôm nayxs truc tiep mbketqua xo so onlinekqxs onlinexo số hôm nayXS3MTin xs hôm nayxsmn thu2XSMN hom nayxổ số miền bắc trực tiếp hôm naySO XOxsmbsxmn hôm nay188betlink188 xo sosoi cầu vip 88lô tô việtsoi lô việtXS247xs ba miềnchốt lô đẹp nhất hôm naychốt số xsmbCHƠI LÔ TÔsoi cau mn hom naychốt lô chuẩndu doan sxmtdự đoán xổ số onlinerồng bạch kim chốt 3 càng miễn phí hôm naythống kê lô gan miền bắcdàn đề lôCầu Kèo Đặc Biệtchốt cầu may mắnkết quả xổ số miền bắc hômSoi cầu vàng 777thẻ bài onlinedu doan mn 888soi cầu miền nam vipsoi cầu mt vipdàn de hôm nay7 cao thủ chốt sốsoi cau mien phi 7777 cao thủ chốt số nức tiếng3 càng miền bắcrồng bạch kim 777dàn de bất bạion newsddxsmn188betw88w88789bettf88sin88suvipsunwintf88five8812betsv88vn88Top 10 nhà cái uy tínsky88iwinlucky88nhacaisin88oxbetm88vn88w88789betiwinf8betrio66rio66lucky88oxbetvn88188bet789betMay-88five88one88sin88bk88xbetoxbetMU88188BETSV88RIO66ONBET88188betM88M88SV88Jun-68Jun-88one88iwinv9betw388OXBETw388w388onbetonbetonbetonbet88onbet88onbet88onbet88onbetonbetonbetonbetqh88mu88Nhà cái uy tínpog79vp777vp777vipbetvipbetuk88uk88typhu88typhu88tk88tk88sm66sm66me88me888live8live8livesm66me88win798livesm66me88win79pog79pog79vp777vp777uk88uk88tk88tk88luck8luck8kingbet86kingbet86k188k188hr99hr99123b8xbetvnvipbetsv66zbettaisunwin-vntyphu88vn138vwinvwinvi68ee881xbetrio66zbetvn138i9betvipfi88clubcf68onbet88ee88typhu88onbetonbetkhuyenmai12bet-moblie12betmoblietaimienphi247vi68clupcf68clupvipbeti9betqh88onb123onbefsoi cầunổ hũbắn cáđá gàđá gàgame bàicasinosoi cầuxóc đĩagame bàigiải mã giấc mơbầu cuaslot gamecasinonổ hủdàn đềBắn cácasinodàn đềnổ hũtài xỉuslot gamecasinobắn cáđá gàgame bàithể thaogame bàisoi cầukqsssoi cầucờ tướngbắn cágame bàixóc đĩa开云体育开云体育开云体育乐鱼体育乐鱼体育乐鱼体育亚新体育亚新体育亚新体育爱游戏爱游戏爱游戏华体会华体会华体会IM体育IM体育沙巴体育沙巴体育PM体育PM体育AG尊龙AG尊龙AG尊龙AG百家乐AG百家乐AG百家乐AG真人AG真人<AG真人<皇冠体育皇冠体育PG电子PG电子万博体育万博体育KOK体育KOK体育欧宝体育江南体育江南体育江南体育半岛体育半岛体育半岛体育凯发娱乐凯发娱乐杏彩体育杏彩体育杏彩体育FB体育PM真人PM真人<米乐娱乐米乐娱乐天博体育天博体育开元棋牌开元棋牌j9九游会j9九游会开云体育AG百家乐AG百家乐AG真人AG真人爱游戏华体会华体会im体育kok体育开云体育开云体育开云体育乐鱼体育乐鱼体育欧宝体育ob体育亚博体育亚博体育亚博体育亚博体育亚博体育亚博体育开云体育开云体育棋牌棋牌沙巴体育买球平台新葡京娱乐开云体育mu88qh88