Shades of Noir: A Reader (Haymarket)

By Joan Copjec

Paris, summer season 1946. This second marks a big occasion in cinema historical past, no longer of creation yet of exhibition. For this used to be the summers while, after the hiatus of the second one international warfare, French critics have been back given the chance to view movies from Hollywood. the flicks they observed, together with The Maltese Falcon, Double Indemnity. Laura, homicide, My candy, and the girl within the Window, brought on the naming and theorization of a brand new phenomenon: movie noir. a lot of what has been written concerning the style due to the fact that has remained in the orbit of this initial review. whereas sympathetic in the direction of the early French critics, this selection of unique essays makes an attempt to maneuver past their first involved glance. starting with an autonomy of that glance - of the 'poujadist' weather that nourished it and the approaching cave in of the Hollywood studio procedure that gave it its mournful inflection - colours of Noir re-explores and calls into query the article first built by way of it. The impetus for this shift in standpoint comes from the movies themselves, seen within the gentle of up to date social and political issues, and from new theoretical insights. a number of contributions examine the re-emergence of noir lately, such a lot particularly within the hybrid kinds produced within the Nineteen Eighties by way of the merging of noir with technology fiction and horror, for instance Blade Runner and Angel middle, and in movies via new black administrators akin to Deep conceal, immediately out of Brooklyn, A Rage in Harlem and One fake circulation. different essays specialize in the open city territory during which the noir hero hides out; the workplace areas in Chandler, and the palpable feel of ready that fills empty warehouses, corridors and inn rooms. ultimately, colors of Noir will pay renewed awareness to the deadly relation among the sexes; to the femme fatale and the opposite girls in noir. because the function of ladies expands, the femme fatale continues to be lethal, yet her deadliness takes on new meanings. Contibutors: Janet Bergstrom, Joan Copjec, Elizabeth Cowie, Manthia Diawara, Frederic Jameson, Dean MacCannel, Fred Pfeil, David Reid and Jayne L. Walker, Marc Vernet, Slavoj Zizek.

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