Wednesday, 25 March 2009

The Third Man

Dir: Carol Reed 1949
Shown at The FeckenOdeon on October 20th, 2001
It's unlikely that there has ever been a film where the music more perfectly suited the action than Carol Reeds "The Third Man". Anton Karas was discovered by Trevor Howard in a Vienna bar. The haunting chords of Karas' "Harry Lime Theme" draw us into the unreal, shattered world of post war Vienna. A city divided into French, Russian, American and British zones. Joseph Cotton as Holly Martin arrives in Vienna to meet his college friend Harry Lime - but Harry is dead…. or is he?
"The Third Man" was made by men who knew the devastation of Europe at first hand. Carol Reed worked for the British Army's wartime documentary unit and the screenplay was by Graham Greene, who not only wrote about spies but occasionally acted as one. The film was shot entirely on location in Vienna amid the mountains of rubble and the gaping bomb craters. It's a world where even the truth is false and trust is a dream no-one dares hope for.

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