Film Noir – D. Jud Jones and Risto Topaloski – 2007


Film Noir CoverOriginal title: Film Noir
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Year: 2007
Director: D. Jud Jones, Risto Topaloski
Duration: 97 min.
Genre: Animation, Mystery, Crime

Film Noir

Disregarding the many complaints of my SEO-plug-in that I should rename my post tags and such, I’m writing this little piece about the film Film Noir, and not the type of film with the same name. I don’t often come across post-2000 films I liked enough and that qualify for this site, but Film Noir is one of them. It’s cheesy, it’s steamy and sexy, jazzy and mysterious. It’s animated in a blended style of real footage serving as background to regular animation, but you barely notice. Just like most films noirs it is a black and white film, with the exception of a few touches here and there. Blood is red, car lights have colour and a few other things do too, but most of it is a blend of darkness, light and shadows. Just like real film noir.

Just like real film noir. That is what makes this film great, and it’s what makes it not so great. Let me explain. As a lover of film noir the atmosphere and the jazz music was amazing. The mystery story was wonderful and reminiscent of the many detective noirs made in the 40’s and 50’s. But real noirs never had blood, explicit sex or so much action. Perhaps I went in expecting an homage to film noir with a film that would be just like one. It is in many regards, but it’s also very modern. Cars are modern, they have choppers, cell phones and other techy stuff, and as I mentioned much more explicit language and action. The result is that it gets stuck somewhere in between being a film noir and a modern mystery/action neo-noir film.

The story is kind of nice though and the way in which it is told, with a lot of narration, was good. It starts off like you would expect from a great noir. A man ‘wakes up’ on a hill with a gun in his hand. He doesn’t know who he is and there’s a corpse lying on the grass with a bullet wound in its head. But who is the dead guy, and in the words of the narrator, did I just kill a man? Then it turns out he’s a dead cop, so is he a cop killer now? Just like film noir logic dictates the only logical next step is to run like hell and try to figure out what is going on. Trust nobody, especially no dames. Saying any more would be spoiling parts of the mystery so I won’t. If you like films noirs, somewhat cheesy films (in a good way) and don’t mind more modern approaches to the genre such as post-noir, neo-noir or tech-noir then this is definitely for you.

Film Noir

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