Friday, 18 February 2011

The Lovely Lady In The Big Farewell Sleep Lake

A favourite literary genre of mine is hard-boiled detective/crime fiction by writers such as Dashiel Hammet, James M Cain and Raymond Chandler. It emerged in America during The Great Depression and became transmogrified by the motion picture industry into the film noir genre in the 1940s and early 1950s, using black-and-white photography derived from the German expressionist school of cinematography (it says here). All low key, big shadows and under-lit. I don't know if there's a similar nomenclature that is applied to radio productions of this particular idiom but the BBC are currently undertaking dramatisations on Radio 4 of Raymond Chandler's novels. They've done The Big Sleep and the Lady in the Lake so far, and Farewell, My Lovely is scheduled for broadcast tomorrow (19 Feb). See the BBC iPlayer for details. Recommended!
"Neither of the two people in the room paid any attention to the way I came in, although only one of them was dead."
"He looked about as inconspicuous as a tarantula on a slice of angel food cake."
"It was a blonde. A blonde to make a bishop kick a hole in a stained-glass window."
"The girl gave him a look which ought to have stuck at least four inches out of his back."
" I needed a drink, I needed a lot of life insurance, I needed a vacation, I needed a home in the country. What I had was a coat, a hat and a gun. I put them on and went out of the room."

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