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Requiem for a Killer: The Making of 'Blast of Silence' (2007)

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Allen Baron ...
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31 January 2007 (France)  »

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1.37 : 1
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Features Blast of Silence (1961) See more »

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Good but not great look at the making of a New York Noir gem.
13 June 2008 | by (Glen Cove, New York) – See all my reviews

Expansion of a 1990 documentary about the making of Blast of Silence, a late in the game film noir thriller that was filmed on the streets of New York City to great effect. The original version was made after the film was rediscovered at a German film festival and a TV film crew went and followed director and star Allen Baron around the films locations while he talked about the film. This expansion includes that footage as well as 2006 interview with Baron. This is a good but not great look at the making of the film as well as the career of Baron. The problem is that the stories that Baron tells seem to be almost random and often spiral out in odd directions, for example he talks a great deal about a closed restaurant and how its was important to the New York theater community. Its not bad, its just not on point. When Baron is on point the stories are great. The film is also great in the way that it shows how the city has changed over the thirty years between when the film was made and Baron revisits the locations. (I should also mention that on the Criterion DVD of Blast of Silence, where this film is included as an extra, there is also a series of stills that brings the changes of the locations up to 2008.) Baron also muses a great deal about the psychology of his character from the film. I'm not sure that its all that necessary since much of it seems pretty clear in the film itself. Overall I liked this look at the making of Blast, but I didn't love it. Its too unfocused to be wholly satisfying. Still I did enjoy the hour I spent watching it but I don't know if I would watch it again, not because its bad but I don't think I'd get much out of a second viewing. Worth a look if you've seen Blast of Silence. If you haven't seen Blast then don't even consider watching this partly because its full of spoilers but mostly what is discussed will mean nothing to you unless you've seen the film its about.


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