Re: RARA-AVIS: Noir v. HB
Wed, 29 Jul 1998 08:33:38 -0400 The tricky thing about some of the noir films of the 30s and 40s -- even
the 50s, I suppose -- is the Hays law (is that the right name? -- the
memory is muggy this morning), which required no bad deed to go unpunished.
This guideline exerted an external force on films that meant a flawed hero
-- a basically good guy who's done the bad thing, like Jeff Markum in "Out
of the Past" -- must be punished by the end of the film. (That's a pretty
simplified description, but is the gist of the thing.) So the destinies of
some characters are sometimes bent by a force outside the world of the
story. Which is a bit of naturalism, one might argue. -- Duane (who needs
his morning coffee)

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