Fri, 3 August 2007
I Wake Up Screaming was produced concurrently with The Maltese Falcon and released shortly after, and thus stands as one of the earliest examples of noir. The Maltese Falcon is the more uniform achievement, successfully coupling a consistent noir visual style with noir themes of disillusionment. But for these very reasons I Wake Up Screaming may be the more important film to scholars of noir. It vacillates between a 1930's-style love story and a war-era tale of existentialist dread, between traditional light-saturated, protagonist-centered staging and elaborate off-kilter compositions bathed in darkness. It is a Janus film, and it is debatable whether it looks primarily backwards or forwards, is principally an ending or a beginning. This podcast is brought to you by Clute and Edwards, of www.noircast.net. To leave a comment on this episode, or make a donation to the podcast, please visit "Out of the Past: Investigating Film Noir" at outofthepast.libsyn.com.