Monday, May 23, 2011

Foreigners Drive Noir Projects Forward

American directors don't seem interested in making many noir-inspired movies these days. Maybe some would like to but can't get the funding. Most American-made films are targeted at a younger audience, and hard-boiled fiction doesn't usually make the cut.
That's OK, foreign filmmakers are picking up some of the slack.
Case in point is Denmark's Nicholas Winding Refn, who just won the Best Director award at Cannes for his film, "Drive," a film noir he shot here in Los Angeles. The movie stars Ryan Gosling as a stunt man who makes movies by day and does robberies at night.
I'm reminded that it's often non-Americans who keep American film and music genres alive after audiences in the U.S. turn away. Europeans and Asians have remained solid fans of U.S. home-grown jazz and blues. And the same goes for film genres such as film noir and gangster movies.
I'm glad that someone still sees the value of this kind of filmmaking. Maybe overseas enthusiasm for the genre will catch on here. Let's hope.

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