I first came across Cindy Sherman’s photographic series, Untitled Film Stills (1977), when looking for photos of film noir titles. The series is designed around fakery, seeking to recreate the feeling of stills from 1950s and 1960s American films but also, in producing the illusion with general key-notes as to the roles of women in these films, comment upon the basic norms prescribed in Hollywood … Continue reading Responses: Cindy Sherman’s Untitled Film Stills (1977)
Out of all of the modern interpretations of film-noir produced in the 1970s, The Long Goodbye (1973) is by far the most aesthetically interesting. This isn’t only because of its integration with counter-culture ideas and values, but with its continuous critical assessment of genre tropes. This critique, which extends to the literature and music as well as the films of the hindsight-based movement, is considered … Continue reading The Long Goodbye (1973, Robert Altman) – A Musical Critique of Film-Noir.
Introduction – The Boundaries Of Criteria. “He was the most original director in 1980s cinema, its only surrealist” – Mark Cousins on David Lynch (2004, p.394). The Avant-Garde is like a spark or a flash of quick-fire creative ideals. The idea of Avant-Garde cinema is not so much to present an experience or escapism, but is there instead to quickly question the ideals of the audience … Continue reading David Lynch + Assimilation of Avant-Garde Aesthetics in Subversive, Mainstream Soundtracks (Part 1)
Charles Laughton is perhaps better known for being a strong character actor than a prolific director, yet his lone directorial effort shows an eye for beautiful visuals, fleshed out characterisation and heady mix of genres and styles. Often lumped in with far more generic film noir fair, 1955’s Night of the Hunter is far more than a simple gangster noir or Raymond Chandler adaptation. In fact it’s so far … Continue reading Night of the Hunter – Charles Laughton (1955)
Film-Noir is a genre so confidently dominated by Hollywood that it takes a film of monumental brilliance to find success in the genre when made outside the valleys of oranges and glamour. France has Henri-Georges Clouzout’s Les Diaboliques, Germany has Fritz Lang’s M but here in the U.K. we have a Film-Noir that stands higher in the polls than all of the American efforts to grace the genre … Continue reading The Third Man – Carol Reed (1949)