Sun, 15 January 2006
Every Orson Welles film demonstrates the great director's ability to work with and against filmic tradition. "The Lady from Shanghai" is a compendium of noir conventions: it tells a tale of post-war greed, of Americans willing to tear each other asunder for a dollar; it is the story of an irresistible dame and the smart guy who becomes a chump the second he lays eyes on her; it uses A-stars against type so as to bring out their blemishes and inner demons (even daring to cut and dye Hayworth's famous hair!). It is thus a classic noir tale, but it is executed with such self-consciousness that the viewer is left to wonder if it isn't the beginning of the end for noir--an elaborate staging of the demolition, the shattering, of the film noir universe. This podcast is brought to you by Clute and Edwards of www.noircast.net. To leave a comment on this episode, or make a donation to the podcast, please visit "Out of the Past: Investigating Film Noir" at outofthepast.libsyn.com.