Drew Morton’s five part series for Indiewire’s Press Play is a perfect primer in film noir. Using a barrage of film clips, he catalogues the conventions, narrative structure, genesis and evolution of the genre. (Yes, genre: Morton addresses the debate on wether film noir is a full-blown genre or not and comes down in favor of genre status).
Unlike film noir, these video essays don’t rely on voice over narration. Drew Morton uses intertitles to spell out the theoretical backbone to his audiovisual argumentation. The result is clear-cut, concise and instructional. In the fifth part, he loosens the reins with a superset that is an ode to international film noir directors (many oh whom have stretched the boundaries of the genre).