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American Noir Film : From The Maltese Falcon to Gone Girl - M. Keith Booker

American Noir Film

From The Maltese Falcon to Gone Girl

By: M. Keith Booker

Hardcover | 19 November 2024

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A deep dive into classic noir films and how filmmakers today are refreshing and updating the genre for new generations.

In American Film Noir, M. Keith Booker introduces readers to the cult-favorite genre of film noir and discusses the ongoing power and popularity of the genre's key elements and themes in modern films, often considered neo-noir, well into the twenty-first century. Booker covers a wide range of noir favorites, from the early classics The Maltese Falcon and The Big Sleep, to late 20th-century neo-noir such as Chinatown, and ultimately newer iterations of the genre as seen in films like Inherent Vice, Promising Young Woman, and Uncut Gems.

American Film Noir contains three separate parts, each exploring crucial categories of noir: the detective film, the lost man film, and femme fatale films. Within each section, Booker discusses the essential classic noir films that embody these themes as well as neo-noir films that invite viewers to analyze how the traditional components of noir have evolved with filmmaking. Finally, each section concludes with twenty-first-century films that evoke noir elements while refreshing the genre and enhancing viewers' appreciation of the originals that inspired them--what Booker terms "revisionary noir". Whether new to noir films, students of the genre, or long-time fans, readers will be sure to learn what makes this genre so special, discover why filmmakers keep coming back to it, and find a new favorite movie to add to their shelves.

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