|All that's masculine and then some: Burt Lancaster|
So there is something perversely titillating about watching this big slab of manhood being forced into total physical submission by evil Paul Henreid in "Rope of Sand."
Burt knows where a diamond mine is, Paul wants to find out, so what better way than to strip Burt, hang him upside down, and whip him? Henreid's character seems not only to want information, but relishes breaking and humiliating Burt in a way that seethes with frustrated sexuality.
|"Rope of Sand": Paul has fun with Burt. This eyeful of Burt's pit-hair alone is worth the price of admission.|
Best known for playing romantic second leads (such as in "Casablanca"), Paul Henreid makes a surprisingly hot villain. When he's evil, his blandly pleasant face takes on a sexily menacing sneer, and he's more likely to flash some flesh (for example, in "Night Train to Munich"). Directors of his romantic roles, in which he's always suave and erudite, probably felt that the animal lurking under Paul Henreid's clothes didn't fit the image. But when he plays bad, we're treated to glipses of his well-muscled and hairy torso.
|Paul Henreid flashes some hairy flesh in "Night Train to Munich"|
A look at the career of the director of "Rope of Sand," William Dieterle, shows he has a long-standing interest in exploring male-male sexual tension. All the way back in the silent era, he directed and starred in "Sex in Chains," which was part love story, part erotica, part melodrama - all about male-male sexuality in prison.
|"Rope of Sand" director's 1928 film about male-male passions in prison.|