Spotlight on—Gender Performativity in Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs

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There are traces in all of them of appropriation and pastiche, irony, as well as a reworking of history with social constructionism very much in mind. Definitively breaking with older humanist approaches and the films and tapes that accompanied identity politics, these works are irreverent, energetic, alternately minimalist and excessive. Above all, they’re full of […]


Spotlight on—Scorsese, Rock Music, and Mean Streets

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There’s no specific term for what Martin Scorsese does with music. His alignment of sound and image is one of the four greatest I know—Kubrick, Lynch, and Tarantino are the few who can claim a similar mastery. Since around the time of Raging Bull he’s had Robbie Robertson (The Band) as “Music Consultant”. Basically, I think […]


Spotlight on—Leo Tover

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In my last post for the Film Noir Foundation Blogathon‘s Fundraiser. I wanted to spotlight the excellent cinematography of Leo Tover. He’s somewhat of an underrated Noir veteran, having filmed several minor classics like Dead Reckoning, I Walk Alone, and The Woman on the Beach. Today though, I’m going to look at his work in two […]

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Criss Cross – Robert Siodmak – 1949

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For the Film Noir Foundation Blogathon I decided to repost this earlier article in the hopes of garnering some more donation money for their worthy cause. Please click on the donation link at the bottom and give generously if you liked the article. I was rather nonplussed with Robert Siodmak’s seminal film The Killers. The opening, […]


Nightmare Alley—Edmund Goulding—1947

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Nightmare Alley is an unrelenting Noir. Its surrealistic atmosphere keeps building in the first two acts, and by the last third you’ve entered a dreamscape where sounds, words, and images can’t be trusted. It’s a tender film too. It forces the audience into a troubling sympathy with a genuinely sociopathic character and paints humanity as capable of both tragic […]