I suspect that most of the people who go on and on and on about her do so, not because of any great distinction on the part of Louise Brooks but because of the article that that fat-headed tyrannical play and movie reviewer, Kenneth Tynan, wrote about her. Though, even more likely, due to the interview Dick Cavett did with him in the early 70s.
As to why anyone would take Kenneth Tynan's opinion about the sex appeal of anyone seriously, that's an interesting question in view of Tynan's devotion to sadistic sex. His first wife, Elane Dundy said, "To cane a woman on her bare buttocks, to hurt and humiliate her, was what gave him his greatest sexual satisfaction." Others commented on his conceit and obsession with domination of women. Which I call pathology, not something that would lead to being an authority on the sexual appeal of women. As I read it in a bit of research for this answer, Louise Brooks, who said she was a victim of rape at a young age, said that she only found domineering men appealing. Maybe that explains Tynan's crush on her. Why it would lead to anyone adopting his definition of that, beats me.
Though I think that's just the kind of thing that people think they should say because someone said it in The New Yorker or some other trendy rag or heard someone like Tynan say it on the Cavett show. I can't imagine why anyone would want sex outside of a relationship of mutual love and mutual respect, but, then, that's just my opinion. If he'd said Jerry Lewis was a genius I'll bet you'd have said that, too. Lot's of people of fashion say such stupid things because they want to be mistaken as part of the smart set.
Update: No, I'm sure I'd have remembered if the movie had been directed by Pabst. So I'm certain you're wrong. If someone gave me the choice between having the kind of career that Dietrich or Garbo had as compared to that of Brooks I'd have no problem with choosing that of either of the real actresses. Though I'd rather be Anne Bancroft than either of them.
Update 2: I don't care what Eschatonian with the pica habit mistakenly thinks she thinks about what I said mistakenly thinks I said. Apparently such a .... um... "scientist" as she represents herself as being doesn't understand you have to read something to know what it said. Anyone stupid enough to take Simels' word for it is too stupid to be concerned about, though apparently they can get work in.... uh, "science".
I do have to wonder how much "science" she gets done since she apparently spends all day every day gossiping there.
Update 3: I'm no "cinemaphile" I just have a good memory for what I've seen, especially if it made an impression on me. And I know who Pabst was because he directed the movie of Die Dreigroschenoper with Rudolf Forster as the most malignant of all Mackie Messers and Lotte Lenya as Jenny, singing the definitive Seeräuber Jenny. Literally definitive as Kurt Weil wrote it for her.
Update 4: Well, dopey, if you do the little exercise of seeing what movies of Louise Brooks are currently available at Amazon.com you would see that the two she made with Pabst directing are joined by a whole barge load of others. Now, why don't you let Tlaz eat that barge load of your claims and start from go. Or do you imagine that someone out in the world which is terra incognita to the most provincial of all people, those whose knowledge ends at the suburbs of NYC doesn't have access to stuff like that? You guys are so clueless about the rest of the country.
It does amuse me to annoy someone who lies about what I said but it's getting old.
Update 5: Simples has deployed his vast knowledge of the mathematics of probability and calculated that the chances of my having seen one of the many times more movies that Louise Brooks made than the two that Pabst directed is between zero and zilch, or something like that. I didn't bother reading it that closely. Well, tough kugel, cretin, I'm certain it wasn't something directed by Pabst and you can't prove otherwise.
Update 6: As suspected Simps doesn't have the slightest idea of what life outside of the most over-rated city on the continent is like. No wonder he thinks everyone else is an ignorant rube as he proves he's an ignorant rube.
I don't watch John Wayne movies, I hate John Wayne almost as much as I hate Clint Eastwood.
Update 7: His Own Petard or He who spellt it dealt it.
"You demonstrably no nothing about film, film history or acting....." (sic) Sorry, for someone who seems to think of himself as my volunteer copy editor, I just wanted to point that out. I'll take it down after a sufficient length of time.
Update 8: Mr. OCD 1963 is quoting Gore Vidal at me as if that's supposed to mean something to me. Especially as it is entirely off topic in the clueless way of someone who knows everything they know about Irish Catholics from watching stereotypes on TV and movies by people who hate Irish Catholics. I'd post it but it would only encourage him.
Gore Vidal is a writer who will not stand the test of time, And by "time" I mean how many people read his historical novels now? I'll bet Mr. Sims hasn't read any of them. If I still worked in a library I'd check the check-out statistics on them but I don't anymore.
By the way, Simps, you familiar with this quote from Gore Vidal, in response to the putrid Midge Decter accusing him of hating the United States?
“Of course I like my country. After all, I’m its current biographer. [he really claimed that] But now that we’re really leveling with each other, I’ve got to tell you I don’t much like your country, which is Israel.”
Look it up, dopey, as I recall he wrote about that incident, himself in an article in The Nation which was entitled “The Empire Lovers Strike Back,", I read that it was in the 120th anniversary issue of The Nation, which I've got somewhere in a box. I recall how amusing Margaret Atwood's essay was, talking about how Canadians resembled Porky Pig with their noses pressed against the glass watching with fascinated and worried horror at the state of things here. No doubt waiting for the feared Anschluss.
One of the most obvious things you're not supposed to admit about Gore Vidal was that he was an open anti-Semite. Of all the things in the world to say to Midge and Podhoretz, he chose to go there. So he was an unreconstructed, patrician, WASP elitist for whom restrictive covenants would probably have been OK. By the time he took Timothy McVeigh to his bosom it was a lot less shocking to me than it once would have been. See this mornings major post for details on why. That along with his advocacy of pedophila and his frequent trips to Thailand at the same time he told people that he was a pedophile.
They'll read Vidals dirty books, which are pretty tame, but probably only as long as 3rd rate college instructors assign them. I was over him a long time ago.