Reflections of Noir

Dick Powell plays an awesome Philip Marlowe in the 1944 noir Murder, My Sweet which is based on Raymond Chandler’s 1940 novel Farewell, My Lovely. I love this particular scene because the flashing lights and sinister reflections capture the aesthetic beautifully. What’s more, watching the thug Moose Malloy (played brilliantly by Mike Mazurki) appear in the reflection on the window was truly creepy while watching the film. I felt scared for Marlowe—brilliant stuff.

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6 Responses to Reflections of Noir

  1. Jim the work you’re doing to capture these moments of hard-boiled, noir cinema is really, really amazing. And I can’t help but think that this treatment could change how the story and cinematography of this genre will be studied. That might seem like a silly statement as there’s been others that have written about noir, but these visual loops best emphasize the visual style that inspired so much future filmmaking.

  2. By the way, the one of Lee Marvin from The Killers remake is an exemplar of Noir GIFness that we can’t appreciate as well from a still or a written description.

    To understand the effort of a professional killer, sweating and breathless, calmly sighting the victim needs us to focus the little bobble of the barrel of the gun. Only a GIF can best communicate that effort by the actor, director, writer, and cinematographer.

  3. Reverend says:


    That Lee Marvin GIF is awesome, I love it. Having the students watch, read, and GIF hardboiled noir should be interesting. We are doing the #6wordstory for each of the 7 or 8 short stories they read for both Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks for that awesome idea, this should be fun.

  4. paul says:

    The #6wordstory idea is great. Put them all together and you’ll have an interesting meta-interpretation of In Our Time.

  5. Grant says:

    A beautiful capture … I love it

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