Third Eye Film Society Forum Index
Author Message

<  Third Eye Archives - Specialty Forums  ~  Film Noir

Ghulam
Posted: Mon Mar 14, 2005 7:37 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 20 May 2004 Posts: 4739 Location: Upstate NY
The Night of the Hunter is on Ebert's list of Great Movies. Ebert called it one of the greatest of all American movies. He added :

"And many great movies are realistic, but ``Night of the Hunter'' is an expressionistic oddity, telling its chilling story through visual fantasy".

What had appeared to me to be stiff and stagey narration, and excessive use of night time eeriness, is reinterpreted by a striking phrase, "telling its chilling story through visual fantasy".
View user's profile Send private message
bocce
Posted: Tue Mar 15, 2005 6:24 am Reply with quote
Joined: 24 May 2004 Posts: 2428
Marj wrote:
It reminded me of gothic fairy tale or fable.


this expresses my feeling for the film perfectly...

i think stylistically it is more informed by cocteau (BEAUTY AND THE BEAST/ORPHEUS) than lang. and cocteau's sensibilities a more attuned to the symbolist/surrealist than lang's which are closer to the expressionism of, say, a kirschner or grosz.

of course the film is laughton's not theirs. but the overall mood and general undercurrent of the surreal seem to me less noir than melodramatic. but i will rewatch the scenes marilyn and marj have pointed out.

one way or the other NoTH is indeed a terrific movie. as to whether it is noir with elements of german expressionism, i'm yet to be convinced.
View user's profile Send private message
billyweeds
Posted: Tue Mar 15, 2005 8:30 am Reply with quote
Joined: 20 May 2004 Posts: 20590 Location: New York City
The Night of the Hunter, an interesting film, is also wildly overrated. It's a promising debut movie for a director who I think never made another film. It practically defines pretentious.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
bocce
Posted: Tue Mar 15, 2005 2:54 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 24 May 2004 Posts: 2428
bill...

actually i think laughton gets some directing credit for the earlier MAN ON THE EIFFEL TOWER whose main director was, if you can believe it, burgess meredith.

i brought this up once before: i can't imagine a more titanic clash of egos other than orson welles being directed by john huston in MOBY DICK.
View user's profile Send private message
Marilyn
Posted: Tue Mar 15, 2005 3:54 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 20 May 2004 Posts: 8210 Location: Skokie (not a bad movie, btw)
From the winning entry in this month's Facets contest:

Noir-est of the noir:Memento is an amazing piece of contemporary noir. Leonard Shelby's tattoos (physically) and memory condition (mentally) add original and meta-appropriate characterization to the archetypal, tortured noir protagonist.

Noir, yes. Noir-est, no.

_________________
http://ferdyonfilms.com
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Marj
Posted: Tue Mar 15, 2005 5:47 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 21 May 2004 Posts: 10497 Location: Manhattan
Thanks Bocce.

Billy - Overrated? Absolutely, but I've yet to figure out why. And pretentious? Without a doubt.

Interestingly this film opened to bad BO and reviews. It seems to have taken on a life of its own. Perhaps some of this is due to newer critics and their awareness of foreign influences?

There are scenes in NoTH, that scream amatuer. All of the scenes with animals in the foreground while the children travel up the river are supposed to be symbolic but must they be SYMBOLIC in caps?

And then there is the scene in which Mitchum is chasing the children up the cellar stairs. He could have caught them easily, but you can see him reach out both arms, telegraphing his coming fall.

And why does Laughton seem to go from realism, (the early scene with the father and the children) to hyper impressionism?

Still for each of these kind of silly scenes there are others, such as the underwater scene of Winters with her hair flowing that wakes one up! I think it's the kind of film where one has to giggle at some of its pretentions and then savor some of its more interesting moments. It was a risky film and certainly far from great. And even if it doesn't fit into our noir discussion, I'm glad I finally saw it. What I was left with, was what I've already mentioned. At least for me, the over all feel of the film outweighed a lot of Laughton's missteps.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Yahoo Messenger
billyweeds
Posted: Tue Mar 15, 2005 6:02 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 20 May 2004 Posts: 20590 Location: New York City
Many of the scenes, particularly those with Lillian Gish, are beautiful to look at, although, to quote Simon Cowell, "if I'm to be honest," Gish is not quite convincing in the role. Mitchum, one feels, could have given a much better performance with more straight-ahead direction. (In fact, he did, in Cape Fear, under a less poetic but more suspense-oriented helmer). Shelley Winters, it seems, was cast because she drowned in A Place in the Sun.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Marj
Posted: Tue Mar 15, 2005 6:14 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 21 May 2004 Posts: 10497 Location: Manhattan
Billy - You're reading my mind again. I had planned on using Winter's two drownings as a trivia question. And while I was watching the film, I couldn't help but think how much better Mitchum was in Cape Fear.

There was one critic, I don't remember who, who said Mitchum's over the top performance was deliberately campy. Maybe it was, though I can't
understand why?
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Yahoo Messenger
censored-03
Posted: Wed Mar 16, 2005 4:33 am Reply with quote
Joined: 24 May 2004 Posts: 3058 Location: Gotham, Big Apple, The Naked City
How did Winters die in The Poseiden Adventure ? I know she was supposed to be an ex-champ swimmer in that one. Did she drown in that one as well ? In any case she spent a lot of time in water in her career.

_________________
"Life is a comedy for those who think and a tragedy for those who feel."
-- Horace Walpole
View user's profile Send private message
bocce
Posted: Wed Mar 16, 2005 5:36 am Reply with quote
Joined: 24 May 2004 Posts: 2428
winters has a heart attack after swimming underwater to free gene hackman who's been trapped by a fallen bulkhead door...

shit, i probably know this camp classic better than ehle knows WIZARD OF OZ. to my knowledge, i've never passed up an opportunity to ruin my taste by re-viewing it.
View user's profile Send private message
Trish
Posted: Wed Mar 16, 2005 8:26 am Reply with quote
Joined: 21 May 2004 Posts: 2438 Location: Massachusetts
Supposedly they are remaking the film - to be directed by Wolfgang Peterson. there was an rumor that Clive Owen had been hired to play the Reverend -and I felt this sick feeling at the pit of my stomach, but it turned out to be silly gossip.

I do enjoy the original though, campy fun

"There's got to be a morning after...."
View user's profile Send private message
dlhavard
Posted: Wed Mar 16, 2005 11:59 am Reply with quote
Joined: 24 May 2004 Posts: 1352 Location: Detroit (where the slow are run over)
Quote:
i probably know this camp classic better than ehle knows WIZARD OF OZ. to my knowledge, i've never passed up an opportunity to ruin my taste by re-viewing it.


I feel the same way about When Harry Met Sally.
View user's profile Send private message
Trish
Posted: Wed Mar 16, 2005 1:28 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 21 May 2004 Posts: 2438 Location: Massachusetts
dlhavard wrote:


I feel the same way about When Harry Met Sally.


That's not Camp Mad it's great cinema - THE best romantic comedy
View user's profile Send private message
dlhavard
Posted: Wed Mar 16, 2005 2:06 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 24 May 2004 Posts: 1352 Location: Detroit (where the slow are run over)
The bits inbetween with the couples talking about their lives I always considered camp.

And then I married ..............Julia but I divorced her and married.
View user's profile Send private message
Ghulam
Posted: Wed Mar 16, 2005 3:07 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 20 May 2004 Posts: 4739 Location: Upstate NY
Like Ebert, Pauline Kael too uses the word "fantasy" to describe TNOTH : "The two kids' flight from the madman is a mysterious, dreamlike episode - a deliberately "artistic" suspense fantasy", supporting somewhat Bocce's recalling of Cocteau's "Beauty and the Beast".
View user's profile Send private message

Display posts from previous:  

All times are GMT - 5 Hours
Page 110 of 113
Goto page Previous  1, 2, 3 ... 109, 110, 111, 112, 113  Next
This forum is locked: you cannot post, reply to, or edit topics.

Jump to:  

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum