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Influences of Other Arts on Film Noir

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I just started reading "Laura" by Vera Caspery.  As I read I noticed many things in the text that reminded me of influences from the arts on film noir.  In this paragraph you see mention of the mirror as a frame.  Also Shelby is likened to a lithographed figure on the motion picture poster:


"The long mirror framed his first impression of Shelby Carpenter.  Against the shrouded furniture, Shelby was like a brightly lithographed figure on the gaudy motion picture poster decorating the somber granite of an ancient opera house."


This passages brings in psychological influences as Waldo despairs that he is not the hero of his own story:


"Upon that Sunday noon I saw myself as a fat, fussy, and useless male of middle age and doubtful charm.  By all that is logical I should have despised Mark McPherson.  I could not.  For all of his rough edges, he was the man I should have been, the hero of the story."


It is almost as if you could quickly switch between the picture Laura and the novel.

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the pulps had a lot of impact on film noir. i don't just mean the usuals like Black Mask, Detective Story, All Detective, Dime Mystery, Nick Carter, True Detective, Dime Detective, etc... but also Doc Savage, Weird Tales, Unknown Worlds, The Shadow, Top Notch, Adventure, The Spider, etc.  

check them out

stories aren't always great, but they are an interesting piece of history

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  • 3 years later...

Principles of composition, chiaruscuro, and perspective developed during the Italian Renaissance. Various philosophies like determinism. Goethe. Abbot Suger. PTSD. Judeo-Christian ideology including the Fall, 'Eve complex'/vilification-of-women. Photography. Pop-Freud. Aristotle's Poetics. Probably a dozen ethical tenets like self-interest vs responsibility-for-others, utilitarianism, free will, moral ambiguity. Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics. Finally: trends in window hangings, especially Venetian blinds.

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