Netflix February 2017_day.19 – The Third Man (1949)

_I once had a dream where I was surrounded by darkness. I would slowly close my eyes and open them to try and see if there would be a discernible difference and found there to be none. At first, I knelt down to put my hand to the ground, felt around with my hands to see if I would move into a wall or fall down a hole. After a few minutes, I stood up. I raised my hands in front of me and started to slide my feet to take steps, as a way to quicken my pace while still being careful. A few minutes later, dream me thought to himself “I no longer care what happens to my in this situation.” I put my hands down and moved as normal, accepting of whatever fate would befall me in the darkness I was in.

A postwar Vienna crime world entangles a naive American. Ferris wheels, dark secrets — and zither music.

Two’s company, three’s a crowd, and this is The Third Man.

_The Third Man takes place in post-WW2 Vienna, and is about an American pulp author, Holly Martins, who flies out to meet with his longtime friend, Orson Welles. Only, turns out, Orson Welles got hit by a car and killed. Stuff happens, and Holly runs around Vienna trying to find out what really happened to Citizen Kane and the origins of Rosebud.

_It’s always interesting watching classic cinema for the first time. I’m no film student or anything, so most often, my source of info on movies is from like…Wikipedia. But there are movies that popularize certain stylistic choices.

With The Third Man, it’s the dutch angle.

Dutch angles everywhere.

_Older movies from the 40’s and 50’s sometimes feel more modern than movies from the 70’s and the 80’s. I kind of associate the 70’s and 80’s with really slow paced movies, which isn’t inherently bad, it’s just kind of how movies were. It’s kind of like, before that, you probably had studios going “Film is expensive, don’t waste any you stupid assholes!” Then after a while, they just go “Here you go, Kubrick, 5 billion feet of film, do whatever you feel like.” And now we don’t even need to use film, but people just have too short of an attention span to pay attention to a movie that isn’t fast paced.

The Third Man is nothing if not brisk. A mystery constantly moving forward, with the old cinema standard of “fade out from one scene as somebody delivers their last line, into the next scene to move as quickly as possible.”

_I wish more movies would do something weird with the score like The Third Man did. The entire fil score is done on a zither. Which…go google what a zither is, and go “Oh, that thing.” Yeah, the entire movie is just 100% solo zither music. It’s…strange, but enjoyable. It’s creative, it’s unique, and it’s something solely its own. Any time I hear random zither music in anything, I’m gonna think back to this movie. The same way when I hear large orchestral arrangements with full choirs of people chanting in Latin, I’ll think back to…nothing specific cause at this point, it’s so overdone and dry.

_Stop by tomorrow, where we’ll be wrapping up the Superman series for the month. Superman Returns. See you then~


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