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Douglas Bellizzi

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Everything posted by Douglas Bellizzi

  1. In case you missed it, here is the link for the archived NPR program on the noir movie marathon on TCM, and our class. There is input from Eddie Muller and Professor Edwards. http://www.npr.org/2015/06/12/413438779/mystery-loves-company-and-tcms-noir-movie-marathon-has-plenty-of-both
  2. This excellent clip, in and of itself and, not knowing what came before or after, presents a searing dramatic scene that may show the noir influence, but not necessarily, by extension, can one conclude that this film in its entirety is a film noir. At least, a valid argument might possibly be made for that notion. I realize that I am not the first in this thread to give voice to this idea. I am just not sure. I think I can agree that the influence of the style of film noir comes across in this mesmerizing scene. On the other hand, for supporters of a film noir (i.e. that the entire fi
  3. I found it interesting that the clocks in Fritz Lang’s “Ministry of Fear” and “M” had a similar purpose, among probably several in the mind of the great director. The clocks striking a certain hour bring a measure of happiness both to Neale (played by Ray Milland) in “Ministry of Fear,” and Mrs. Eckmann (played by Ellen Widmann) in “M”. Both of these clocks strike and signal a certain time, a time that both of these characters were longing for. Neale is elated that he will be released from the asylum into what he believes to be a new start for a better life. Frau Eckmann is happy becau
  4. In the scene from “Murder, My Sweet” under review, I believe that it may be fair to say as Nino Frank asserts, “…the essential question is no longer 'who-done-it?' but how does this protagonist act?" (Quoted from Silver and Ursini, Film Noir Reader 2, page 16). Although here we are not a witness to the entire motion picture, it may be possible to reasonably infer from this excerpt (induction {!?} as opposed to deduction as per Mr. Holmes et al) an agreement with Nino Frank. I suppose, for one seeing this scene from Murder My Sweet in 1944, the response would be one of a kind of shock at th
  5. Nino Frank’s case for including “Laura” as a film noir, along with “Double Indemnity”, “The Maltese Falcon” and “Murder My Sweet”, makes sense to me. The opening scene is engaging. It begins with a first person narration as Waldo Lydecker (played by Clifton Webb) remembers poetic characteristics of the weekend in which Laura Hunt (to be played by Gene Tierney) met her demise. Lydecker: “I shall never forget the weekend Laura died… a silver sun burned through the sky like a huge magnifying glass…” Well, we’ll soon know that Waldo Lydecker is, after all, a writer." Lydecker:“…It wa
  6. Please forgive me: I suppose Dark Passage might have appeared on Professor Edwards’ “Punch List”. Sorry… I’ll try to make it up to you. I promise. -- Do you feel this film's use of first person POV in this scene was successful or not successful? I believe that the first person POV was successful in Dark Passage to the extent that it had the potential to help the audience experience the desperation that Vincent Parry (played by Humphrey Bogart) felt. Whether it fulfilled that potential I think it did to a certain extent. (Disclaimer: I have seen this film many many times because I love
  7. The clip begins with a low angle shot of a glorious full moon beaming down from a black sky amidst a corona of clouds. The shot fades to one of the objects receiving the light of this dispassionate moon, a printed sign that establishes the opening setting in a rubber plantation in Singapore. There is a cut to a close-up of a tree, a portion of its bark removed and adorned with a white ring that droops and drips precious white sap into a pail. We hear the drip of the pure white sap pinging into the pail (the seeming iridescence -- my perception -- of the whiteness reminds me of the white i
  8. Not a frame of the film clip that Professor Edwards excerpted is without meaning. The ordinariness of the first moments of “M” resonates with an aspect of Film Noir that one could almost term necessary. Like ordinary sunrises, ordinary morning cups of coffee, ordinary conversations among neighbors, an ordinary man and woman laughing together when set in film noir cannot remain so. But film noir must proceed from the ordinary. Ordinariness shields us from fear and desperation, and perhaps at times it may even discount the need for hope. Ordinariness is a balm. But ordinariness cannot b
  9. There were a few aspects of the opening scene of this film, La Bête Humaine, that could have contributed to the genre of Film Noir. Jean Gabin's character seems to be in control of the train giving signals to his assistant in various non verbal ways, which peaked my interest about him, but I know nothing about him. I want to know more. Will he stay in control as regards to his life or be derailed somehow? The fact that the train figured prominently in the scene almost as another character... maybe the train could represent fate in some way. I understand that protagonists in film noir often fe
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