Tag: Body Heat

December 31, 2015 / / Main Slate


One of the great things about the motion picture is the way certain kinds of stories lend themselves to its unique storytelling vocabulary, the utilization of sound, image, and the manipulation and juxtaposition of multiple images in time (editing), to create a multilayered narrative and to effect an emotional response in the audience. The Romance, The Western, Science Fiction: these categories all have their roots in the realm of literature (books) and movies made based on these various story forms naturally incorporate additional elements that (ideally) add depth and dimension to them. In very special cases, however, an alchemical reaction occurs, creating a new form entirely unique to the film language. In the 1930s the Romantic Comedy, supercharged by the intangible chemistry between certain actors and the rapid fire dialogue written for them, spawned a genre called “Screwball.” And in the 1940s, a number of European emigre directors began to adapt dark, fatalistic Crime Dramas for the screen, often incorporating in them the visually dynamic elements of German Expressionism, thus giving rise to what the French referred to as “Film Noir” (literally “Black Film.”)