I'm posting this on both the Film Noir and Neo-Noir forums because the film is from 1970, somewhere in between the two eras
Has anyone seen Road to Salina? If so, do you consider it noir?
It has many noir elements: sexual obsession, brother-sister incest, murders, secrets, a femme fatale, claustrophobia, mental illness, and a guy who naively wanders into this snake pit. It was written and directed by Georges Lautner, who has some noirs to his credit. The cast includes the eerily beautiful Mimsy Farmer, Ed Begley (not so beautiful, eerily or otherwise), Robert Walker, Jr. (son of a noir icon), and Rita Hayworth (yes, that Rita Hayworth). The basic premise is that when RW Jr walks into the gas station/cafe owned by Rita H, she thinks he's her son who left without a word 4 years ago. That would also make him Mimsy F's brother.
When all the ingredients are mixed together, the result is some kind of alternate universe. In this world but not of this world, or vice versa. That characterizes the noir universe, but it can also characterize other universes. It was filmed in the Canary Islands, set in Mexico, with a French director, and a largely American cast, all speaking English except for a few words in Spanish. All of that left me feeling disoriented. That's one of things film noir is supposed to do. On a strictly adding up the parts basis, I would call it noir, but something in my gut says not so fast buster.
The question I'm having difficulty answering so far is: was I (like RW Jr) traveling in the noir universe? Or was it some other strange 70's French-American trippy world in which an apparently normal person (though we know nothing about RW Jr's past) enters a world of crazy people with secrets.
It could be both.
If you've seen the film, please weigh in. Thanks!