In “The Wrong Man” by Alfred Hitchcock, conventions that are common to the noir genre are used throughout the film. Film noir means “black film” in French, implying that those films belonging to that genre were often dark, cynical and not idealistic. The style of Film Noir came to be after WWII ended, reflecting the dangerous, bleak and uncertain period the people had to suffer through the war and post war effect. In “The Wrong Man”, the dangers of mistaken identity which leads to so many misfortunate mishaps makes it clear for the viewer to see that Manny asks the central question in all noir films, ‘why is this happening to me?’
The film begins with an oblique angle of the stork club entrance. Oblique angles are angles that have been purposefully tilted to make an image look distorted or warped to forewarn the audience that something uncontrollable and significant will happen here. Already the audience is given a hint that something ill fated is about to happen and the film has not yet even began. The foundation behind Film Noir always has the main character encounter unfortunate event after event in a streak of bad luck and the opening shot quickly yet discreetly introduces this idea. As Manny exits from the club, two police men patrolling the area walks past and almost look to be accompanying Manny. Hitchcock reminds the audience that the city is a very dangerous place at night and so law enforcement is needed constantly to keep the place under control. This gives the idea that the environment that Manny works in can be unsafe, grim and uninviting. Noir genre films are filmed at night, usually in the city. This is because the audiences that are attracted to watching Film noir are mostly working class people, living in the city which is, at night time quite sinister, unwelcoming and dirty. This quickly establishes an element of danger to the film. The audience turns to noir films because they can often relate to the grimness and the harsh... [continues]
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