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The Third Man (1949)
For me, a stylish, complex, but ultimately overrated film noir.
Let me start this off by saying that on the technical side, The Third Man is absolutely brilliant. The cinematography is beautiful, the visuals enhance the atmosphere, and that soundtrack is perfect. It's beautiful to look at and wonderful to watch.
That aside, I don't know how far I can go without sounding like a pretentious idiot or an uninformed idiot. I don't particularly like either and I'd hate to become one too.
The Third Man has a fantastic premise. Plenty of great twists and turns with fine performances from Orson Welles and Joseph Cotton, but in my opinion, I don't think that this noir story stands out or is all that great anyway.
Maybe I'm wrong, but I'm not too keen on several plot holes and inconsistencies. First off, we don't know who the real "Third Man" is. Harry Lime? Or someone else? Maybe that's supposed to be the beauty of it and I'm not getting it, but I don't like it at all. Second, the shop owner was killed all of a sudden when he was about to give out information. Harry Lime? Or again, someone else? He's pulled to the side and forgotten about just as soon as he's gone.
But my biggest problem with the film is with Anna Schmidt. First off, she claims she is no longer in love with Lime. Then she finds out the atrocities he's committed, and further cements her decision that she is better off living with someone like Holly instead of Lime. In fact, who can't help but dislike Lime for the things he had done? But in the end, she ends up hating everyone around her for setting him up for his death. She won't talk to Holly, she tries to defend him and show him the way out of his problem, she won't cooperate. What gives? And then the ending scene. That entire ending, in fact. The ten minute chase scene, while expertly shot, dragged and didn't need to be ten minutes long. It could've gotten to the point in about three minutes. And the final three minutes of the movie, in which Anna just walks and Holly stupidly waits for him.
I don't know. Maybe I'm not looking at this the way I'm supposed to and not appreciating it for what it is, but I wasn't at all entertained by the things I saw.