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Mr. Moonglow

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  1. 50-50 hind sight is a wonderful thing. I wonder if Mr. Hirsch wrote his opinion on "Narrow Margin" in the mid-1950s I doubt he'd come to the same conclusion. He'd have to have seen numerous preceding films to come to the same conclusion, to say nothing of having read the minds of writers and director. As far as I'm concerned, the dialogue fits the characters and the humorous moment of the fat man blocking the train corridor (justifying the film's title?) is priceless. To write this film off as parody or satire of the film noir style is criminal.
  2. Most of the comments to this discussion have concentrated on the "criss-cross" design of the opening sequence. But just as important are the observations of several commentators to things being in "twos," "pairs" and "doubles." In Francois Truffaut interview with Hitchcock, the master commented on his "fascinating design" of "criss-cross" "pairs" and "doubles" saying, "One could study it forever." Even Hitchcock's cameo appearance was playful to the theme in that he carried a double bass. I agree with most that Hitchcock is a special case when it comes to his place in the study of film noi
  3. I am in agreement with the comments pointing out the similarities in the themes presented in this week's Daily Doses, but there are also contrasts in the way the the faceless characters are presented. In "The Hitch-Hiker" the character is standing still. In "Kiss Me Deadly" the character is running. In "Caged" the character is riding in a vehicle with a limited view. In "D.O.A." the character is walking down dark and depressing corridors. I empathize with the commentator who, not having seen "D.O.A.," did not get the sense of dread in following Frank Bigelow down long, darkened halllways.
  4. That was my point. Although the scene "gets" you "no matter how often [you] see it," you were "astounded by the appearance of Lime" the first time you saw it. That's a privilege that should be reserved for first time viewers.
  5. As wonderful as the scene is, as has been pointed out by the many respondents and I add my own appreciation of it, I regret that it was chosen as one of the daily darkness film clips. I remember seeing "The Third Man" as a nine-year-old and being astounded by the fact that Harry Lime was still alive. I have since seen the film many times and screened it for many friends, children and grandchildren who were astounded by Harry's appearance. The clip chosen is a spoiler; a scene that I fear will ruin much of this brilliant film to newcomers. Although few other scenes were as impressive as the cho
  6. I first saw "Out of the Past," as well as many other films noir, when they first appeared in theaters. Even as a youngster I found it disturbing that I was liking the hero even while feeling uncomfortable with his actions. "Out of the Past" is superb in bringing out the moral ambiguity of the noir hero and arguably does it more successfully than any other movie labeled "film noir." One other point that perhaps our professor can answer. Years ago I read an article about "Out of the Past" in which the critic referred to the movie as "having so much style, it could be French." Does anybody kn
  7. Not only did these men rush to her, they came out of the shadows of the club to do so.
  8. To me the finest use of jazz in film noir is the music in "Sweet Smell of Success," which unfortunately isn't on the TCM schedule. Elmer Bernstein's score and jazz by the Chico Hamilton Quintet underline both the brightness and the sleeze of the characters who occupy nightlife in New York. This is not to overlook the comments on the jazz sequence in "Phantom Lady" which has more to do with Elisha Cook drumming himself into an **** frenzy than what little hope he might have in bedding Ella Rains with the music. An earlier posting mentioned the difference between the sedate Rita Hayworth and
  9. The use of sound, light and shadow to create anxiety have been discussed, but also the deep focus photography Lang uses throughout the opening practically drags the viewer into the film. There's also the high camera angle as Milland enters the asylum courtyard, making him look very small, but by the time he reaches the exiting gate the camera is on the same level with the character, giving the impression of him being on equal footing with the outside world he is about to enter. I don't know how much further discussion this particular Lang film will get, but he uses many techniques througho
  10. One of the most intriguing moments in the opening scene in "Laura" is the smirk on MacPheason's face when Lydecker gets out of the tub (off screen) and asks MacPherson to throw him his robe. Is Macpherson smirking at Lydecker's audaciousness or his "short comings"? I have a feeling that Preminger beat the censors. The one thing I didn't like about the scene is the use of Lydecker's voice over (which is a staple of many films noir). It gives the impression that he's the narrator of the tale, but after the opening, his voice over doesn't recur in the rest of the film.
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