• Ashvin

[Review] 'The Third Man' is a Cynical Pursuit In Post-War Vienna


Quirkily charming, THE THIRD MAN is easily one of the finest noir films ever made, let alone one of the best British films ever produced.


The writing, cinematography, acting and pacing are at an elite level of professionalism.

The cinematography is not only breathtaking (in gloomy black & white), but also attributes to the film’s noir genre, by the atmospheric use of black & whte expressionist cinematography, boosted by harsh lighting and uniquely warped “Dutch angle”, used by cinematographer Robert Krasker, which helps to perfectly encapsulate the post-war period in Vienna the film is set in.

The film’s score is hilariously uplifting, intriguing and playful, yet mellow at times, adding an interesting touch to the quirky, yet professional nature of the film.


The performances are purely spectacular, especially that of Orson Welles as Jack Lime. Despite only making his entry halfway through the film, Welles steals the show with this iconic performance, also comprising of an iconic shot of Welles’ prominent smile in a scene where dissonant lighting is shun upon his face, revealing himself in the shadows, uncovering Jack Lime to be alive.

THE THIRD MAN is a fun, idiosyncratic ride. Full of well-balanced witticism and solemnity, Carol Reed’s 1949 feature never manages to lose track of its story and tone.


A true classic film noir!


Score: ★★★★½

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