Mon, 8 October 2007
Rita Hayworth is GILDA. From the flip of her fiery hair to the reprise of her incendiary song, she sizzles the celluloid and burns herself indelibly into our collective consciousness. In fact, her presence so scorches that we are apt to miss the technical artistry of this film. Rudolph Maté's superlative cinematography uses banal objects pedagogically, to teach us to read the images: the blinds in Mundson's office make us aware of the fact we're looking, then show us how and where to look; the elaborate staging and framing of staircases make us wonder whether each character's fate is ascending or descending. While the Triad of superb players (Hayworth, Ford, and Macready) fleshes out the elaborate story, it is Maté's camera that builds the suspense. In then end, the cinematography combines with lines of dialogue pronounced by philosopher Uncle Pio to give us the world through noir-colored glasses—a "worm's eye view" that lends Hollywood's biggest stars a distinct earthiness. 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.