29 December 2005 | tedg
A great invention of cinema so far is noir, together with cinematic sport, smoke and fireballs. Noir is new, subtle, introspective. It advances and spins all sorts of sophisticated children, sometimes thought as ironic.
Its origins aren't quite as interesting as what it has ballooned to, how it has encompassed the world. But if you are interested in origins, look at this. It incidentally includes Lucy (using her own name) so you can impose your own layer of noir/irony on it as a modern viewer.
In its time, it was meant to evoke "Red Dust," a little piece about prostitution in the jungle leading to love. This is actually a remake of the original that was quickly made in 32 after the success of 'Red Dust."
Post-code, you don't have much of a whiff of sex here, and Lucy doesn't give the impression of a doomed soul that true noir would later demand. But you do have a clear notion here of the central notion of noir: fate seeming to deliberately conspire against on ordinary foil, odd coincidences, extreme consequences from trivial acts. Plus rank selfishness.. What's missing is the dark, angled photography that would later be associated with noir, even for some its defining feature. And you don't yet have the heavy introductory voice-over. But you do have something similar, a framing flashback.
It has an uncharacteristic ending for a noir, a happy coupling. Lucy is saved. I think this was before she became a redhead.
Ted's Evaluation -- 1 of 3: You can find something better to do with this part of your life.