Wednesday, April 25, 2012

5 Things You May Not Know About 'The Third Man'

Oliver Lyttelton at offers an interesting piece on one of my favorite films, The Third Man.

Thirty-six years ago today, on April 25th, 1976, filmmaker Carol Reed passed away. One of the greatest directors ever to come out of the U.K., Reed started out as an actor, but gained fame as a writer-director in the late 1930s and 1940s, thanks to films like "Night Train To Munich," and the outstanding "Odd Man Out" and "The Fallen Idol." Later, he'd also find success with films like "Trapeze," "Our Man In Havana," "The Agony and the Ecstasy" and "Oliver!," for which he won the Academy Award for Best Director, beating out Stanley Kubrick's "2001" and Gillo Pontecorvo's "The Battle of Algiers."

But Reed's undisputed masterpiece is "The Third Man," a 1949 film noir based on a screenplay by the great British writer Graham Greene. The film involves a writer of Westerns, Holly Martins (Joseph Cotten), who comes to post-war Vienna after being promised a job by his childhood friend Harry Lime. On arriving, he discovers that Lime had seemingly been killed shortly beforehand. However, he soon finds out, through investigating with Lime's girlfriend Anna (Alida Valli) that his old pal had been stealing and diluting penicillin from military hospitals, leading to the death of children, and that Lime (indelibly played by Orson Welles) is still alive.

You can read the rest of the piece via the below link:

You can watch some of the footage from the great film via the below link:

And you can listen to a reading of Graham Greene's The Third Man via the below link:

Note: the above photo is of Orson Welles as Harry Lime and the below photo shows is of Third Man director Carol Reed and writer Graham Greene.

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