|Ingrid Pitt as Countess Dracula. What a bust.|
And she did nudity, which was far from gratuitous; rather, her body was an extension of her craft, a messenger for her natural ability to lend gothic credibility to any film she was in. When Ms. Pitt passed away last year, I was shocked before I was sad; didn't it seem as if she were eternal? Immortal? Like Christopher Lee, who I feel, at this point, should officially be given a free pass from ever dying. The man had to wait until 2009 to be knighted, for crying out loud.
But back to Ingrid Pitt. Like Barbara Steele, Pitt belongs to that genre category of women who evoked screams rather than emitted them. These are the scream queens I love, strong, sexy, iconic women who filled their victims with intoxicating desire and then dread, bringing them to their knees, trembling. Sybil Danning also belongs in this group, as does Elvira, prototypically speaking.
|Hey, this wasn't in the vows.|
I don't want to be the ingenue. I want to be the engineer. Marki Bey in Sugar Hill (1974), if you will. Anyone can scream, run, trip and feign surprise at the sight of the devil, but not anyone can play the devil in a blue dress the way Ingrid Pitt did.