RARA-AVIS: Re: Noir series (long answer)

From: jacquesdebierue ( jacquesdebierue@yahoo.com)
Date: 16 Sep 2007

--- In rara-avis-l@yahoogroups.com, William Ahearn <williamahearn@...> wrote:

> Not so. If you say such-and-such is noir because a, b,
> and c say it is noir, then that is an answer. In this
> case, it's IMDB lists it as noir.

The word "noir" is polysemic, in particular when it's used in expressions such as "film noir" and "noir novel". Some apply to designate a style, others to designate content. Besides, classifications are not really worth that much, certainly not when compared to the story, which is the thing. If I give you a bicycle and tell you it's an airplane, you may be momentarily puzzled but you still ride it, you still use it as a bicycle. The same if someone says that a film or a novel is "noir". Not a big deal.

>I'm really not a
> wisenheimer. All I'm trying to do is to find the
> definition that includes say "Dark Passasge" (or "In A
> Lonely Place"), "The Big Sleep" (or another private
> eye film) and say "The Asphalt Jungle." All are
> considered noir by some but not by me and all I'm
> looking for -- and not necessarily from you -- is the
> unified field theory that says these are noir.

Good luck in your unified field theory. You are going to need it. I bet when you find the ultimate definition, a new book or film comes out that makes you change it. Over and over... Writers and filmmakers are interested in writing or filming stories, not so much in fitting certain fixed criteria so it's "noir" (or "drama", or "comedy" or any of the other arbitrary classifications).



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