Last night, exhausted from my four-day work week, I got my second wind & attended the screening of the opening night’s offerings of Journey Into Fear & The Third Man…Eddie Mulller produced & curated the opening night & let these films prove to the audience just how dirty & little this world really is.
Joseph Cotten didn’t have to go to Safeway to get a chicken, and Dolores Del Rio? Why, where is that cat costume? Why is it that personal security seems to be a new thing that is just catching on? No one was safe or secure in JOURNEY INTO FEAR! The Christ-like sacrifice of the magician makes that all perfectly clear.
YOU TUBE CLIP FROM JOURNEY INTO FEAR-1943
In both films, the initial appearance of Orson Welles was met with applause by the audience. To this day, he commands respect & is far from forgotten.
No one could match that speaking voice, his delivery of key lines. He has maintained a special mystique for his fans that is clearly evident, & the screenings from his body of work reinforce this special bond that has transcended his death & turned him into the legend that he is.
In THE THIRD MAN, we see more of what it was like to live in the context of the ruins of political, military, and economic defeat. The aftermath of war adds a credence to ‘it’s a bitter little world’ that goes beyond the morbid humour of Film Noir. This film pays a tribute to pulp fiction, challenging the notion that it’s not literature. It was not a shame to be a good writer & make a living from it. In this film, we see the realities of Allied partitioning of Vienna-fake passports, fake funerals, and all sorts of survival tactics that would morph into the sort of world inhabited later by James Bond & keep actors like Tom Cruise living in the public view, eye level, at your nearest pulp magazine rack in your grocery store.
YOU TUBE CLIP FROM THE THIRD MAN-1949
See what happens to a hack writer who drinks too much!