RARA-AVIS: Noir definition from the movies

From: sethharwoodpodcast ( seth@sethharwood.com)
Date: 17 Jul 2007

Ok, so maybie it's not kosher and it's probably bad form to start off my first post here with a reference to a movie, especially if I'm posting at 4:15 because I can't sleep, but here goes. I've got to say it. I think Noir is best defined by the movie "Le Samourai" from 1967. It's French but don't think that makes me real Frenchy or anything (not that there's anything wrong with that). But it's about one of the coolest noir movies I've seen. And I think cool is important here as a part of the Noir definition, not in the overused sense that everything is "cool" these days, but in the sense that nothing can flap the main character, the assassin, play by Alain Delon. He doesn't, won't open his mouth to say too much or let anything out to anyone--in the face of the law, other killers, the guy he's working for, whoever. Impossibly, in some cases. That's cool in the sense of the original form of the word in slang: the idea that it's opposed to hot, it's immovable. That's noir.

Why's it called Le Samourai? Dunno. But there're no swords here, only guns. And the reference/analogy is well placed.

That's my first post. Been listening in for a while. Now I'm a member, official.

Seth Harwood Jack Palms Crime

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