Sunday, January 02, 2005

3rd man

I picked up The 3rd Man for 2.49 at JB over Xmas

as you do. And just watched it for the 1st time in x years. Now I have that zither stuck in my head again.

Karl Hartl, the film's Vienna producer had invited the film crew to a typical Viennese "Heuriger" wine tavern before work started, Anton Karas' play on the zither hypnotized Reed at once. His music, exactly synchronized with the film sequences-especially the "Harry Lime Theme" which sounded hypernervous, schmaltzy and dangerous at the same time-became part of film legend... source

Because the music is so unusual and evocative it can be difficult to describe. The brilliant American critic Manny Farber, for example, writing in The Nation (1 April 1950) resorted to a weird, striking image: the music "hits one's consciousness like a cloudburst of needles". However it's described, the zither score of The Third Man is a unique piece of film music, which manages to create a vivid world all of its own. Sometimes it accentuates the dramatic action, at others it acts like a kind of ironic commentary, alleviating tension...source.

Something to do on the 2nd day of 05. Play it on guitar in lieu of autoharp.

Comments: 3rd man

My all time favourite film for a bargain price. Well that or the Karate Kid 2.
Posted by Flute at January 2, 2005 04:48 PM

Hey Mr Flute. I remembered you saying so at Blogger's cafe do. Was even going to make a cheap shot about daily zithers - but it didn't quite work.
I thought it was fab. Enjoyed it much more than when I first saw it. I'm sufficiently 'impassive' now, I guess, and the final scene makes impassive sense.
Haven't seen KK 1 or 2.
Posted by boynton at January 2, 2005 04:59 PM

It's a fine film with an enduring message for us all.

Don't run with pointy zithers!
Posted by Sedgwick at January 3, 2005 09:56 AM

Just walk on by

Posted by boynton at January 3, 2005 10:33 AM

Martin Carthy has a great guitar version on his latest album, Waiting for Angels. (Neither of which seem prepared to link to this comment).
Posted by Dick at January 3, 2005 11:14 AM

Cheers, Dick. I read about it yesterday - "The 1st Link" in Google for 'Harry Lime Theme'. Think I'll be seeking the album.

(I disabled HTML in comments very early on here - but it didn't seem to deter the spammers - so may restore it)
Posted by boynton at January 3, 2005 11:28 AM

Lots of great moments, I usually start going on about it after beer 7 so it must have been a good night.
Posted by Flute at January 4, 2005 11:00 PM

No comments: