It was another super busy week – lots of activities and such that kept me out late most evenings. One of these was a completely surprising and unexpected pleasure. About two weeks ago I went to a play with some friends called “Pulp”. It was a murder mystery set in 1933 and decidedly influenced by the film noir culture. It was a delightful play – the plot was clever and facetious and I loved the costumes and set. I have an underlying obsession for fashion and architecture of the 1930s-late 1940s and could hardly turn down an opportunity to see a play based on that era. I loved the play so much that I invited my mom to go with me to watch it last Sunday because I wanted to see it again. She loved it too! Before the play started, and during the intermission, they played scenes of classic film noir. One of these scenes features some actors I had seen on other things all leaning over a statue of a bird. I asked my mom if she knew what it might be and she said she thought it was Maltese Falcon.
Now, for some completely incoherent reason, I’d heard of it but I thought it was a film about a WWII fighter plane. I have no idea why. Anyway, I was intrigued by it and looked it up online. Some adds came up on the side saying what theaters it was playing in; I thought that was weird and moved on to read what the film was about and decided I’d like to see it. Our library had it and home it came and we watched on Monday. I loved it!! It was just my speed – some mystery and intrigue, art heist, and a clever plot, but nothing violent or disturbing or scary. It was fun to see some other actors I liked from other movies in this film too.
I went back online to read more about the film and again saw that there were showtimes of local theaters playing it. Apparently the film is 75 years old this month and in celebration of the event several theaters were showing it as a special. I looked at my local theater and sure enough, they were playing it once on Wed night. After verifying and reverifying several times that this was the case, I told my mom and we went to the theater Wed to watch it. I’m still somewhat in awe over the timing of it – we just happened to go to the play, see a scene, the library had it that next day, and then our theater was showing it on Wed!! What a thrill!! I was a bit concerned that they would show modern previews and ruin the effect, but they didn’t! There was a brief introduction setting the stage and giving some interesting tidbits about the actors, and then the black and white film rolled across the screen in all its scratchy, old glory with symphonic sound and in the original aspect ratio. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Never did I imagine that I’d be able to watch an original 1940s era film right in the theater! It was really special and I’m so happy that the timing worked out for us to see it. It’s kind of unlocked the floodgate and now there’s lots of different films I want to explore. I enjoyed the storyline very much, but I got just as much joy from observing the film angles, the lighting, the costumes, the sets, and the amazing decor and architecture. The film is full of beautiful buildings with art deco styling that I just drooled over.
If you haven’t seen Maltese Falcon, find a copy, make some popcorn, and be sure to watch on a dark and stormy night… it will be an evening of delightful thrills and intrigue!
Blessings to you,