"I have discovered the dance. I have discovered the art which has been lost for two thousand years."

... Isadora Duncan, whose "discovery" featured plenty of flowing garments and scarves.

"Affectations can be dangerous."

... Gertrude Stein's acerbic comment about Isadora Duncan's having been killed by her ubiquitous flowing scarves.



Many people consider Isadora Duncan to have had the same relationship to modern dance that Picasso had to modern painting. She rejected the stuffy, highly conventional constraints of classical ballet and defined expressive dance in her own image.  This film is a biopic of that eccentric free spirit, following a structure somewhat similar to the well-known Chaplin biopic with Robert Downey, Jr, using a framing device in which an aging Isadora dictates her autobiography to her amanuensis. This structure sets the stage for a series of flashbacks to the key incidents in her life. (The book they are writing together, Isadora Duncan's "Ma Vie," is a real book. See the Amazon links below)

The film hits all the high points ...

Duncan not only flouted traditional concepts in dance, but she flouted traditional concepts of morality as well. One of her lovers was the theatre designer, Gordon Craig; another was Paris Singer (heir to a sewing machine fortune), who gave her lavish gifts, including her own dancing school; she bore a child by each of those men. Both children were tragically drowned in an accident on the Seine River in 1913.

Isadora spent a considerable time in Russia in the period just after the revolution. That country embraced her as a fellow revolutionary, and gave her an old palace to use as a dancing school. Although Isadora had sworn never to marry, she finally broke down in 1922 and wed a handsome, drunken, insane Russian poet named Sergei Yesenin, who was 17 years younger than she, and was known to be a serial seducer. Although he would meet the Reaper at age 30, he managed to marry five or six times and fathered children by at least one other woman. He must have done at great job at seducing Duncan as well, because they had no common language, unless you count sex. According to her biographers, she knew no more than a dozen words of Russian, and he spoke no English at all. At one point Yesenin accompanied Isadora on tour but his frequent destructive rages, similar to the hotel room rampages of today's rock stars, caused them both much negative publicity. Of course, those violent incidents were probably more acceptable in the United States than their pro-Marxist politics. In Isadora's last U.S. tour in 1922-23, she managed to combine "immorality" and Communism in a stage performance in Boston, by waving a red scarf and baring her breast, proclaiming, "This is red! So am I!" The following year, Yesenin left Duncan and returned to Moscow where he was institutionalized for mental illness, and eventually committed suicide as soon as he was released.

Duncan's own life ended no less tragically than those of her children or her crazy poet. She always wore scarves which trailed behind her, and this caused her death in a freak accident in Nice, France. She was killed when her scarf caught in the wheel of her friend's Bugatti automobile. As the driver sped off, the long cloth wrapped around the vehicle's axle. Ms. Duncan was yanked violently from the car and dragged for several yards before the driver realized what had happened. She died almost instantly from a broken neck.

She died a Soviet citizen.

The unconventional socialist actress Vanessa Redgrave, eventually a six-time Oscar nominee, was a perfect choice to evoke the unconventional socialist dancer, and she was rewarded for her memorable performance with Oscar and Golden Globe nominations, as well as the Best Actress award at Cannes. Unfortunately, the writer and director were unable to use that performance as a springboard to a great film. They made all the usual biopic mistakes. The story is too long and rambling and pointless, and tries to pack her entire life into its running time instead of focusing on some important thread or some key portion of her life. We sit back and watch Isadora trot around the globe, apparently abandoning in succession each of the projects she had been so passionately extolling the virtues of in the previous scene.

The film could have compensated for its unfocused script with some great musical numbers, but the dancing scenes are mostly repetitive. If you watch this film without knowing anything about Duncan's contribution to dance (which places you in the boat with me), you will conclude that Duncan's entire schtick consisted of prancing about like a twelve year old dreaming of being a dancer, wearing flowing gowns, trailing a diaphanous scarf, bending her knees, pointing her toes, waving her arms, and acting "free". I'm sure that must have been some of what Duncan did, but surely not the whole shebang! I guess I could have handled watching this once, but the process of prancing around the room must have occupied close to an hour of the film's running time, and it looked exactly the same every time. (One of her lovers actually said "will you stop prancing around the goddamned room" just as I was thinking the same thing!) I did, however, enjoy the prancing a lot more on the one occasion when she did it naked.

Although the film doesn't cohere very well, there are some great individual scenes. I liked some of the Russian material quite a bit. The one dance scene that is significantly different from the others is Duncan's first performance in Russia. The lights go out while she is performing, and the night seems doomed to failure, but everyone there improvises, including the audience, and the participants end up having the most memorable night of their lives. Someone in the Russian audience provides a lantern, then the audience members gradually start to sing to provide musical accompaniment. One man manages to produce a squeezebox. (Russians always carry one, don't you know? Astoundingly, in a presumed violation of the Soviet constitution, or at least in violation of the rule of Russian screen clichés, nobody there had a balalaika.) Several men join Duncan on stage for traditional Russian dancing. The film managed to capture the whirlwind of that moment. This scene got me. I was clapping along, completely drawn in.

Unfortunately, it takes the film nearly two hours to get to that point. That wait could be excruciatingly boring at times, and I got the impression that Ms Duncan was both pretentious and mentally ill. If the rest of the film had been as invigorating as the Russian part, I might have enjoyed spending all those minutes with the eccentric characters and their repetitive behaviors, but it wasn't and I didn't.

Note: my comments refer to a 153-minute version. The Region 2 PAL DVD version is 134 minutes long, which equates to 140 minutes of real running time because of the PAL speed-up. The original film is said to have been 188 minutes long. To my knowledge that version has never been made available, and I have never seen the longer cut, the virtues of which are extolled by many at IMDb who claim to have seen it.



As Isadora, Vanessa Redgrave was stark naked in a private moonlit dance, and topless in a shocking public stage performance. This .zip file includes both 1024x576 versions and 1920x1080 versions of those two scenes.


  • * Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe).

  • * White asterisk: expanded format.

  • * Blue asterisk: not mine.

  • No asterisk: it probably sucks.


Catch the deluxe version of Other Crap in real time, with all the bells and whistles, here.


Today's 1970s clips:

Margaret Lee in Slaughter Hotel (1971)

Margaret Lee in The Rogue (also 1971)

Scoop's notes:

Margaret was a bi-lingual English actress whose other language was Italian. Her specialty was Italian films, often of the super-spy variety, in which she was often cast as a femme fatale. (Super-spy films were insanely popular after the Bond franchise kicked off in 1962.) She made a shitload of those B-grade Italian films in the decade from 1962 to 1971 - nearly 70 of them, of which 12 were made in 1965 alone - so it's not surprising that the two above were made in the same year.

She seems to be alive now, and would not even be that old (67), but she's been out of the public eye since 1985, and seems to live somewhere in obscurity.

Here are some of her other nude appearances, all from 1969!

Frau Wirtin

Venus in Furs

Face in the Dark





French-Canadian movie about the height of the disco era during the mid 1970s in Montreal. Some critics didn't like it but it could have been worse under the title "Disco Duck" starring Rene Simard and directed by Alan Thicke.

Sarah Mutch: topless but no disco bush.

Marie-Line Cloutier: nude as "hooker a la mode" in opening sex scene.

Lina Roessler: brassiere.

Sophie Desmarais: cleavage as chock singer.

Stephanie Aubry: bikini as pool babe.

Nadja David: sexy as "le fan de Mick Jagger" (the french phrase for "whore").

Jocelyne Zucco: only if you find Rhea Perlman sexy.

Julie-Anne Cote and Marie-Aude Doyon: cleavage as VIP girls.

"Mother's Day"


Near-skinless remake of 1980s horror with Rebecca De Mornay as the mother from hell.

Briana Evigan: partial boob being forced to strip by mother for her son. She's the daughter of BJ and the Bear's Greg Evigan.

Deborah Ann Woll: brassiere.

Jaime King: sitting on toilet for pregnancy test.

A.J. Cook and Alexa Vega: sexy as party girls.



Blaxploitation horror starring Snoop Dogg. Capped by others before but I still found some new new collages.

Erin Wright: boobs and buns as obligatory 'ho.

Bianca Lawson: nice pokies.

Katharine Isabelle: bathtub scene in deleted scenes section.

Ellen Ewusie: bra and panties as "The Death Lady".

"8 Million Dollars"


Skinless low budget horror.

Courtney Mackay: sexy but only shown only in post-coital sex scene.

Rachel Petrie: sexy.

"Dual Suspects"

episode: "The Trail of Amanda Knox"

Simona Chmerlin: skivvies as rape/murder victim.

episode "Rotten to the Core"

Shayna Fairman: nude as rape/murder victim but it appears she's wearing in a body stocking in some shots.

"Cold Case"

episode: "Close to Home"

Cecelia McHugh: sort of nude as rape/murder victim.

"The Hitchhiker"

season 5

I suspect the episodes from the 1980s series currently airing on the Mystery Network are trimmed (possibly for nudity) because the sex scenes cut straight to  a commercial and one sucker punch was obviously edited.

Melody Anderson: sexy as hooker also in episode "Cruellest Cut".

Krista Bridges: also sexy as hooker in episode "Cruellest Cut".

Bonne Beck (brunette), Gina Darling (blonde) and other: also sexy as hookers in "Cruellest Cut".

Jill Hennessy: very sexy in the stripper-less "Striptease".

Donna Goodhand: post-coital sex scene (possibly edited) in "Striptease".

Guylaine St-Onge: bra and panties as dominatrix in "Studio 3X".

Liliane Clune: bra and panties also in "Studio 3X".

"True Bond"


Television documentary about the inspiration of James Bond.

Emina Basic: 1940s era bathing suit.

Natalie Roy: sexy as the 1940s French actress Simone Simon.


episode: "Turkish Hold'em"

April Telek: very sexy as poker player almost as stacked as her chip winnings.

"Outlaw Bikers"

episode: "Fallen Angels'

Rachelle Corbeil: bra and panties as stripper.

"Dan for Mayor"

episode "Claire 2.0" (s02e04)

Mary Ashton: showing more cleavage than usual.

More actresses/models.

Alexandra Dupuis-Taillefer: sideboob.

Andree de Villers: a more explicit nude.

Colette Hills: implied nude by Joy Ride chick.

Courtney Mackay: sexy (and she does nudes!).

Crystal Molloy: Fubar chick in lingerie.

Drea Fristy: topless in see thru wet shorts.

Eva Simon: full frontal.

Julie-Anne Cote: sexy.

Karen Cliche: under-boob.

Meredith Cheesbrough: side boob wearing only shear scarf.

Nancy Bouzi: sideboob by Lofters contestant.

Rachelle Corbeil aka Rachelle Wilde: explicit nude but fuzzed out.

Rebecca Applebaum: discreet nude poster for play.

Shawna Herman: Fubar babe sexy.

Stephanie Aubry: sexy.

Tamsen McDonough: revealing modeling portfolio.

Vanessa Blouin: topless.



"Tipping the Velvet"

(2002 UK mini-series)

Rachel Sterling and Keeley Hawes

Rachel Sterling and Anna Chancellor

Rachel Sterling and Sally Hawkins









Film Clips

Ashley Levis in Femme Fatales, s1e8m, in 720p

Makinna Ridgway in Femme Fatales, s1e8, in 720p

Karine Vanasse in Angle Mort, 2011. See below.

Chu Chu Zhou, Dream Home, 2010, See below.

Song Xiao Cheng in Dream Home, 2010. See below.

Roxane Mesquida, Sennentuntschi, 2010

Roxane Mesquida in A ma soeur, 2001, 1080p

Yvette Yates, I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell, 2009, 720p

Marisa Berenson in Barry Lyndon, 1975, 720p



Sandra Bernhard in I'm Still here