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Shadows and Fog (1991)

 -  Comedy | Crime | Drama  -  20 March 1992 (USA)
6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 11,433 users  
Reviews: 72 user | 36 critic

With a serial strangler on the loose, a bookkeeper wanders around town searching for the vigilante group intent on catching the killer.

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Title: Shadows and Fog (1991)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Kirby ...
Killer
...
...
Hacker
...
Vigilante
...
Vigilante
...
Vigilante (as Daniel Von Bargen)
Camille Saviola ...
Landlady
Tim Loomis ...
Katy Dierlam ...
Fat Lady
...
...
Clown
...
Marie
Dennis Vestunis ...
Strongman
...
Doctor
...
Prostitute
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Storyline

A small and insignificant bookkeeper, Kleinman, is awoken one night by his neighbors who wants his help to track down a strangler who has been killing people all over town. The citizens form vigilance committees, but when Kleinman has dressed, his neighbors have disappeared. Meanwhile a circus has come to town. Irmy and Paul are two of the artists. After a fight, Irmy leaves the circus in the middle of the night. Eventually she meets Kleinman, scared and alone. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 March 1992 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sombras y niebla  »

Box Office

Budget:

$14,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$2,735,731 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After Love and Death (1975), Woody Allen would again utilize the three word title with an "and" middle word on several more occasions. These would be for Husbands and Wives (1992), Shadows and Fog (1991), Sweet and Lowdown (1999), Melinda and Melinda (2004) and Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989). Love and Death (1975) was Allen's first film in which he used this type of three word title. Similar also was Allen's title for Hannah and Her Sisters (1986). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Hacker: Kleinman, Kleinman, open up! Kleinman! We know you're in there!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Woody Allen: A Documentary (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

The Cannon Song from Little Threepenny Music
(1928)
By Kurt Weill
Performed by Canadian Chamber Ensemble
Conducted by Raffi Armenian
Courtesy of CBC Records - Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Allen at his Finest
4 October 2000 | by (Toronto) – See all my reviews

'Shadows & Fog' is, for me, all that which makes a perfect picture. I've seen all Woody Allen's pictures, and none affects me in the same way that 'S&F' does.

The film is set in the early part of the 20th century somewhere in Eastern Europe. The opening scenes set up what will become the basic plot (and believe me, it is basic) of the film. Allen plays Klieinman, a simple clerk who is awaken by a lynch mob hell-bent on catching a killer who has taken to strangling (or slitting the throats, nobody seems sure) of the townsfolk.

As Kleinman leaves his flat in reluctant search of the killer, we are introduced to the fog swept streets of the village. It is here that we find the real character of this film. Allen uses the simple story of the hunt as a means to introduce us to us to true beauty in the night. He uses lighting and canted angles to produce a surreal setting unlike any film produced in the last half-century. Note the way light filtering through the spokes of the circus wagons reflects of the fog in a way so beautiful and haunting that it's easy to forget we're watching an 88min comedy shot on sound stages in New York.

Setting the mood as such, Allen walks us through the streets and offers a brief glimpse of the characters who inhabit the night. It seems as if the whole town is up searching for the killer, and each of them is given a short moment to offer a bit of insight and then move on. However brief, each character brings us further into the shadows and we soon feel a chill as the night air seems to fill the room.

The scene eventually shifts to a whore house where we are privy to a spectacular scene. Five women sit at a table discussing relationships, fascinating stories given that most of them are whores. Instead of cuts, Allen simply places a camera in the center of the table and revolves as the ladies converse. It's a scene reminiscent of the opening sequence of 'A Touch of Evil' of the Copacabana scene in 'Goodfellas'. Amazing.

There's so much more to say. Brecht's score is wonderful, the cast is literally one of the best of the 1990's (Cusack, Malkovitch, Foster, Macy, Riley, Shaw, Bates, Tomilin, Kavner, Pleasence), and the jokes are hilarious.

Above everything, see this film for it's namesake ... Shadows and Fog. If ever there was a homage to night and all its mystery and beauty, it's 'Shadows and Fog'.


19 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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