Yes, I think translator's job is difficult too. The example with subtitles is true. In a perfect world we all must see movies and read books in the original version without sub or translation, but it's a hard job... Not everyone talk and understand english alas. For movies, it's almost everytime like that for a foreign film lover ( I talk about Z1 disc, you got the best choice in usa ! ) : Only the biggest studios do subtitles for us like Warner, Mgm... Well, I think it's the only two ! Sometimes Columbia or Fox do. With Criterion Code red or Vci, I have never french subtitles, For me that's ok, but if I want to see kiss me deadly with some friends I must pick up the mgm disc with french sub instead of the Criterion bluray. For the reading, I have just order four Chandler's novels : Good for my bad english !
Just finnished about a week ago Blackout: World War II and the Origins of Film Noir by Sheri Chinen Biesen (Oct 19, 2005), and its given me some new insight into what I'm trying to quantify. I suggest everyone read it. Some quotes from the book below.
A number of elements all came together into what The New York Times tagged the "red meat crime cycle" (before French critics coined the term Film Noir) at the onset of WWII. "The PCA' s lapses in code enforcement, the Office of Censorship banning "un-American" Hollywood gangsters but condoning of depictions of war related atrocities, and the Office of War Information's regulation of screen stories depicting the combat front or domestic home front to promote the war effort---all of these developments complicated WWII censorship and encouraged hard-boiled film adaptations that initially reformed gangsters and promoted patriotic crime." Pictures were filmed with "tremendous studio rationing of lighting, electricity, film stock, and set materials" in an uncharacteristically dark urban Los Angeles basin in response to wartime blackouts.
The first Noir where all of the elements came together was Double Indemnity, and along with other wartime productions such as The Phantom Lady and, Murder My Sweet represented some of the most expressionistic, stylistically black phase of film noir (what I'm calling the *Hard Core Noirs*). "The noir aesthetic evolved from the wartime constraints on film making practices. Brooding, often brutal realism was conveyed in low lit images recycled sets (disguised by shadows, smoke, artificial fog, and rain), tarped studio back lots, or enclosed sound stages.
In the post war period film makers redefined noir realism having more flexibility in location shooting and lighting. Wartime Noir created a psychological atmosphere that in many ways marked a response to an increasingly realistic and understandable anxiety---about war, shortages, changing gender roles, and "a world gone mad"---that was distinctive from the later postwar paranoia about the bomb, the cold war, HUAC, and the blacklist which was more intrinsic to the late 40's and 50's Noir pictures." (lighter grayer or Films Gris, *Soft Core Noir*)
And you can see this in the films. Wilder's Double Indemnity is darker in visual style than 1950's Sunset Boulevard, Fritz Langs Ministry of Fear and Scarlett Street are darker than The Big Heat (1953). But there are some exceptions Aldrich's *Kiss Me Deadly*(1955) and Lewis' *The Big Combo*(1955) are pretty dark, but the general trend outlined in the book is distinctive and sort of explains the reason for the range in the pallet of Films Noir.
I've been perusing through 100 Silent Films (BFI Screen Guide series) by Bryony Dixon. An entertaining and informative read. Recommended for anyone who likes film.
A great collection of images and memories of the 3rd Avenue El in its final years, amazingly all in color. Only a few at night though, too bad. A venerable plethora of Noir locations. It also leaves out the lower section of line that ended at South Ferry since it was already taken down) Photographed by Lothar Stelter who with a job as an electrician received access to many vantage points along 3rd Avenue in the early 1950's (it was demolished in 1955). At one point it mentions films and lists Ray Milland's "The Lost Weekend" and shows the street clock that was shot in a scene as Milland walks up the Ave. Surprisingly it doesn't mention the film "The Dark Corner" which prominently features the EL, in its opening sequence and interspersed throughout the film (I was hoping to see Tudors Arcade in an image but no), go figure.
just a sample of the images
I don't remember any of the Manhattan Els I was only 2 years old when the last one was torn down, all I remember was the massive two level structure that served the IRT Flushing line, the BMT Astoria line and the Queens stub of the 2nd Avenue El (minus tracks) that was left standing in Queens Plaza (it had a turn around loop) into the 1970's. The 2nd Avenue El crossed the Queensboro Bridge on the upper level (now a roadway). The original station had 8 tracks on two levels, now it has 4 tracks on two levels.
Last edited by cigar joe; 03-04-2012 at 06:54 AM.
yesterday once more is my favorite song. I listen to it everyday. I love Shakespeare's book and recently i am readign
Pulp of a different nature: I just finished the last volume of the Robert Howard Conan omnibus, and am also reading my way through Bernard Cornwall's Saxon series.
Cornell Woolrich The Dancing Detective under his William Irish pseudonym:
Someone Like You - Roald Dahl
"Stories for those with broad minds and nerves of steel."
Rick: I went on a Dahl kick a few years back. He is even a bit hard-boiled at times...
I'm reading In Lonely Places by last week's NOTW contributor. The Kindle ebook is more reasonably priced so I went for it. Such a good writer... and her love of noir shows.
Thanks for the tip on In Lonely Places. It looks intriguing; I’ll buy it this weekend.
Recently read a good french noir by Patrick Moldiano called Missing Person.
When his PI boss retires, an amnesiac tries to pick up the decade old trail
of his lost identity.
Last edited by mkhand; 04-10-2012 at 10:58 PM.
The Sisters Brothers, by Patrick deWitt.
I finished this last week, and the only complaint I had was that the pages went by too quickly.
A Westernoir! How's about this: it reminded me of both DOA and Charles Portis at different times.
I read constantly, but I don't do many recommendations; I think this story would appeal to the noir lovers here.
Just an informational addendum to Noir heads to my post on the book By The El above that I originally added to my review on The Killer That Stalked NY in the reviews section its also appropriate here:
One other point of note for all Films Noir set in Manhattan that depict an El they all will probably be shots of the 3rd Avenue El All the others had be already demolished (except for the Polo Grounds Shuttle) by the hey day of Films Noir:
Ninth Avenue El closed & demolished beginning 6/1/1940 (Polo Grounds shuttle remained until 1958)
Sixth Avenue El closed & demolished beginning 12/4/1938
2nd Avenue El closed & demolished beginning 6/13/1942
3rd Avenue El the South Ferry to Chatham Square section closed & demolished beginning 12/22/1950 *(after principal filming of The Killer That Stalked New York) Chatham Square Station North to 143rd St. section closed & demolished 5/12/1955, and the final section from 149th Street North in The Bronx lasted until 4/28/1973
Of course there are still extant elevated lines in The Bronx, Queens, and Brooklyn but they are relatively newer constructions than the original Manhattan Els and can handle steel cars while the Manhattan els cars were steel and wood composites.
Last edited by cigar joe; 04-21-2012 at 07:09 PM.
So you judge books by the cover? Lol.. I actually just picked it up on my Nook. I still have a stack of great books recommend by Guy Savage I'm getting through so I have plenty to read...
I just started Top of the Rock: Inside the Rise and Fall of Must See TV by Warren Littlefield and T.R. Pearson, about when NBC ruled TV. It's really great so far.
Edward Bunker's No Beast So Fierce. Incredible.
"Don't give me that love stuff."
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