The innocence was lost suddenly. The threat of nuclear annihilation was in the air perpetually. The result was widespread pessimism and anxiety among the people in general.
It was such a social situation that was responsible for the emergence of the so called “Film Noir” The optimism and the pleasant mood of the Hollywood musicals and comedies were replaced by violence and greed. Even the title of the films echoed the black tone of the content and treatment. The Dark Passage (1947) Fear in the Night (1947) Kiss me Deadly (1955) are few examples. But Film Noir was not a genre. It was more about the mood and tone of the film. A particular moody content treated in a dark style. These films usually revolve around a main male character who is very cynical and hard hearted. He encounters an amoral and seductive beauty. Through her manipulations the hero becomes a scapegoat often after a murder. Finally the hero gets destroyed and this woman who betrays him also gets destroyed. The protagonists of these films generally belong to a particular class. They come from lower strata of society or rather the underworld. They are very ambitious people who become criminals to fulfill their ambitions. Thus they are cynical, disillusioned and frightened, obsessed with sex or some other vice. They are very insecure and lonely people who end up as ultimate losers. They are driven by their past and they often repeat their mistakes. The story telling is rarely linear and is often elliptical and complex. Flashbacks are aplenty.
Orson wells and his film Citizen Kane had great influence in the camera work of Film Noir . , Orson Wells and his camera man Greg Toland contributed to the aesthetics of cinema by using wide angle lens, for dramatic purposes, there by creating what was known later as “deep focus” and the “depth of field”. According to the French film critique and New Wave film director Francois Truffaut, “ this film ( Citizen Kane ) has inspired more