Heart of Darkness_Film Noir

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Heart of Darkness: Film Noir : 

Heart of Darkness: Film Noir

--“Suddenly it came over me that everything would go wrong. It sounds crazy, Keyes, but it's true, so help me. I couldn't hear my own footsteps. It was the walk of a dead man.” : 

--“Suddenly it came over me that everything would go wrong. It sounds crazy, Keyes, but it's true, so help me. I couldn't hear my own footsteps. It was the walk of a dead man.” -Walter Neff, Double Indemnity

Terms best describing Noir: : 

Terms best describing Noir: Cynicism Pessimism Darkness

History/Influences : 

History/Influences Film noir lasted from 1940s to the early 1950s (post Depression WWII) Low budget, black and white “B-movies” Influenced by hard-boiled detective fiction. Gangster films/German Expressionism

Noir Characters : 

Noir Characters

The Noir Hero : 

The Noir Hero The normal man attacked by twists of fate. Often a detective. Never all good or bad--a mixture of light and dark. One of the first Hollywood “anti-heroes.”

The Femme Fatale : 

The Femme Fatale A women who the hero idealizes. She is usually a source of hope and also downfall. They are often beyond reach or understanding therefore dangerous.

Types of Femme Fatales : 

Types of Femme Fatales The “innocent” woman the hero idolizes The two-faced, deadly temptress A vulnerable women behind a hard-boiled shell. The hero’s struggle to determine which type of women she is central to the noir style.

Visual Style : 

Visual Style

Visual Elements : 

Visual Elements Low angle shots, dark foregrounds, shadows Low ceilings, claustrophobic settings Side-lit close-ups Urban settings--cold, dark, rainy streets Lots of violence and sexual tension Use of narration or voice-over

…continued : 

…continued Straight vertical lines Scenes split by lines implying disorder Ribbons of light

Themes : 

Themes

Alienation/Paranoia : 

Alienation/Paranoia The enemy is not a person but an unseen force. The pain is more mental than physical. The noir hero is often disillusioned to begin with or becomes this way by the end of the film.

Claustrophobia : 

Claustrophobia Characters are often trapped by circumstance or the past. Generally the visual style of the films represent this feeling.

Obsession : 

Obsession Usually sexual obsession or revenge or greed. Obsessions can never be filled.

Loss/The Past : 

Loss/The Past Characters are often haunted by a loss in the past or past deeds. This leads to characters who are fleeing from the past or trying to recapture the past. Usually the past catches up with them.

In the End : 

In the End Noir films almost always end in failure, disillusionment, and death (often all 3).

Noirs and Neo-noirs : 

Noirs and Neo-noirs The Big Sleep The Maltese Falcon A Touch of Evil Chinatown Sin City Pulp Fiction Brick The Man Who Wasn’t There

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