Sexy, Tough, Women of Film
Some of the best characters in film are sexy women in roles that place in diabolical or action genres. Of course, there are sexy tough women that lure their usually male victim into their web and when they are done with them, kill them. Those women in film have been around since film began, but the start of the sexy villain began with Marilyn Monroe in one of her only serious dramatic roles, Niagara Falls, in the mid-50s. Even today, she remains sexy, yet in the film she marries Joseph Cotton only to kill him later, once she obtains what she wants.
The standout in the late 60's is Jane Fonda, her first film, Barbarella. Extremely sexy, campy, kitschy, that operates a laser gun while dressed in mini mini skirt and go-go boots. She is a great warrior goddess of the galaxy in this not so serious film.
There is queen of all tough bitches of film in the 1986 film, Aliens, with Sigourney Weaver. While she was tough in the Alien in 1979, she ramped up for this film creating a role others tried to emulate. Weaver never had the true "sexiness" appeal in her say like Monroe or Fonda, but she was appealing for her ruthlessness and fierceness.
Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2 in 1991 did have more sex appeal combined with a tough-ass attitude. She looked nice, harmless, and could be, but she could also turn into a real bitch when Arnold was in pursuit and she made sure he would pay a price.
The last 10 years continues the tradition with Uma Thurman and Angelina Jolie. Both combine the essential elements of heroines: sexiness and resilience. They are like a Monroe in their beauty yet their dark side and toughness are overtly shown. Thurman was diabolical in Kill Bill 1 and 2 (2003-4). She added a sense of humor to the mix as she fought. She is always nice to look at. Jolie is dripping with sex appeal, much like a Monroe or Sophia Loren. It oozes out of her whether she means it or not, yet, in SALT (and in many of her films) she turns nasty like a black widow action heroine leaping impossible lengths. She has no qualms about blowing your head off in cold blooded, smiling fashion. She is not someone you want to cross paths with.