RARA-AVIS: Re: future noir?

From: jacquesdebierue (jacquesdebierue@yahoo.com)
Date: 25 Jul 2009

  • Next message: Nathan Cain: "Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: future noir?"

    --- In rara-avis-l@yahoogroups.com, Steve Novak <Cinefrog@...> wrote:
    > Are you being ironic...?
    > The reality is that whatever shades of noir still exist ...and they are
    > multiple and shifting all the time...noir is doing a fantastic businees
    > around the world, both in books and in movies, including Tv shows...and of
    > course fashion, music and art...In other words noir aesthetics are a
    > prevalent trend and the recuperation by the media at large (including book
    > publications of course) of those aesthetics has been a dominant force in
    > branding and advertising...This has created abominations in the eyes of
    > purists, and wonderful and innovative productions alike...
    > Iım appaled at times by the power of the regurgitating media machine and Iım

    I was talking with someone the other day about how the era of Franz Kafka is so NOW... this was in the context of the world in the decade and a half before World War I and the similarities with the current situation. Kafka had an uncanny sense of smell as well as the ability to project the big picture -- to those who were attuned. That big picture was and is the essence of noir. You might say that Kafka didn't invent it but instead discovered it as an essentially modern phenomenon.

    Because of the power of that vision, we don't really think that a guy in a noir novel is going to shoot his way out of anything. There is no possible escape.

    Noirists would do well to marry their vision to the spiritual leadership of Franz Kafka. Not only is this strictly appropriate, but it also marries them to the greatest writer of the previous century. One could add Robert Musil to the mix. Seemingly prosperous societies, at the peak you might say, rotten to the core and some people smelling something far away... smelling the NOW.

    One could also add the great Zamyatin. The smell was felt in various places, all around the same time...

    Noir is not about criminals, even, it's certainly not about psychopaths, though it can have harbor them and justify them easily... it's about the nightmare that Kafka discovered for us.


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