• Tobias Liberman

Quickie - The Third Man

Updated: Sep 27

"You Were Born to be Murdered"

The Third Man is a 1949 black and white film noir directed by Carol Reed. The film’s story revolves around a writer named Holly Martins investigating a conspiracy central to the death of his friend, Harry Lime.


The film takes place in Vienna (post-WW2) and starrs Joseph Cotten (Holly Martins), Allida Valli (Anna Schmidt), Orson Welles (Harry Lime), and Trevor Howard (Major Calloway).


One of the most recognizable aspects of this film is Anton Karas’s amazing score, starring weird and oddly unique instrumentals, somehow perfectly matching the tone of the movie.


The Third Man also has some of the best black and white cinematography we’ve ever covered, which makes sense, considering that this film was shot by Oscar-winning cinematographer Robert Krasker (Brief Encounter, Odd Man Out).


Adding on to the topic of cinematography, The Third Man is a movie that really puts to use the tilt shot/dutch angle. In fact, the film probably has more dutch angles than regular straight shots, giving the movie a very unique visual style which you probably won’t find anywhere else.


The Third Man is filled with solid performances from the whole cast, without a doubt the best of which from the great Orson Welles (Citizen Kane, Touch of Evil) playing the mysterious Harry Lime to perfection.


One of the greatest things about The Third Man is the story. The plot hooks you in almost immediately, leaving the viewer inept to look away from the screen until the moment the movie is over, and the credits are rolling.


The Third Man is one of my favorite movies of all time, and one of the best film noir’s that I’ve personally ever seen.


Here at The CinemaScope, we recommend this picture.


A+

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