Introduction to Film
December 5th 2011
Film critics, historians, enthusiasts and auteurists alike believe that The Maltese Falcon is the very first film noir. With down-and-dirty characters, from a hard boiled anti hero, a damsel in distress, a femme fatale to a group of sell their young soul for a dollar archetype band of thieves, all that in which portraits of greed and betrayal. The film holds close to Dashiell Hammett's 1929 book, with a Shakespearean tagline Humphrey Bogart himself made up, for its time it is truly pulp fiction brought to life.
Bogart creates the blue prints to the original hardboiled detective, Sam Spade(also an anti hero in his own right). Mary Astor is the femme so fatale that even the most stone like quality of men are willing to die for her. And Sydney Greenstreet and Peter Lorre are globetrotting rogues, lacking in any scruples to say the least, pursuing the priceless Maltese Falcon - the "stuff that dreams are made of."
Picture is a remake of an original film turned out by Warner's 10 years ago, with Bebe Daniels and Ricardo Cortez. An intriguing piece of melodramatic entertainment, "Maltese Falcon" weaves quickly through a sequence of attention-holding episodes to fracture through to a most naive climax. To solidify utmost in audience reaction, the audience can take advantage of the bombshell end by publicizing preliminary times of the movie, and advising patrons to get utmost amusement by viewing it from the start. Extra advance development to obtain first day patronage will roll up hefty momentum in the key runs.
"Film Noir is Crime drama marked by dark themes, a cynical outlook, anti-heroes, often with a scheming femme fatale, nighttime actions, expressionistic visual style, and voice-over narration"(Goodykoontz, B., & Jacobs, C. P. 2011).
"Other mysteries may be more specifically news reporter stories, crime thrillers, or detective stories. Perhaps the most notable of these is film noir, in which cynical, hard-boiled detectives, often tempted and/or betrayed by a femme fatale (a desirable but scheming "fatal woman"), solve crimes in a manner reminiscent of pulp detective nov¬els. Some noir films, rather than focusing on detectives trying to solve a mystery, depict people trying to plan or commit crimes, or having general underworld dealings and double-dealings. Film noir literally means "black film" in French, and applies to stories treating dark themes, shady characters, and more often than not, physically dark set¬tings with much of the action occurring at night. Low-key, high-contrast lighting and strong use of diagonal, expressionistic patterns and odd camera angles are common in"(Goodykoontz, B., & Jacobs, C. P. 2011).
A quick synopsis of the tale can be quite difficult without giving too much of the mystery away. The story is convoluted, too say the least.. Suffice it to say that Bogie's Sam Spade and his partner Archer get involved with the lovely Bridgid O'Shaughnessy (Astor) on the premise of an easy money job. The partner quickly winds up dead, along with Bridgid's most recent boy toy (that she hired the pair to send packing. Sam slowly falls deep into the intrigue as Brigid pursues the Maltese falcon, from the naked eye a black statuette but underneath the enamel a jewel-encrusted goldmine.