NIGHT OF THE HUNTER PDF
Get Free Read & Download Files Night Of The Hunter Robert Mitchum PDF. NIGHT OF THE HUNTER ROBERT MITCHUM. Download: Night Of The Hunter. 29 Introduction Davis Grubb's novel The Night of the Hunter was an instant bestseller when it was released in It was no surprise, then, that Hollywood . Dear every screenwriter/filmmaker, read James Agee's screenplay for The Night of the Hunter [PDF]. (NOTE: For educational and research purposes only).
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Dedication: to my mother. Where do murderers go, man! Who's to doom when the judge himself is dragged to the bar? MOBY DICK. The Night of the Hunter. 2. The first time I saw Charles Laughton's The Night of the Hunter was at . The Night of the Hunter is based on a novel by David Grubb and James Agee. The Night of the Hunter. By Peter Rainer. “The A List: The National Society of Film . Critics' Essential Films,” Reprinted by permission of the author.
Skip to main content. Log In Sign Up. Music in The Night of the Hunter. I also thank my mother for proofreading and giving her opinion on the memoir. Music in The Night of the Hunter Introduction ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. It was no surprise, then, that Hollywood would try to capitalize on that success by turning the book into a movie. The reason this highly unorthodox work was made was that Charles Laughton, one of the greatest actors and theater directors of his time, was the one to direct it.
This proves that the collaboration between the different people involved in the making of the picture was invaluable and brought some ideas which might have never seen the light of day otherwise. Laughton instantly decided that the scene 1 In almost every sequence, the score is completed by original or religious songs sung by the characters. It also seems Schumann was very well appreciated by his coworkers on account of his talent, unobtrusive personality and professionalism Jones Editor Robert Golden, who was also almost always present on the set during the shooting, had been forbidden by Laughton from doing any cutting during the production Jones Laughton wanted to direct the editing just like he had the movie.
The work of the musician was highly unorthodox and features one of the closest collaborations between a director and his composer in the history of movie making, and it gave birth to one of the most interesting scores ever made. Indeed, the music is not only there to give dynamism to the movie, it also subtly emphasizes its themes and the characters of the story. In numerous places all throughout the movie, it highlights the different themes which are broached, such as the struggle between good and evil or the benevolence of the river, but it also brings the audience information about the characters, whether it is a new light shed on them or simply an emphasis on their inherent traits.
In this section, we will see how the different kinds of music which are used in the film, meaning the score, the songs written for the movie, and the use of religious songs, all add new layers to an already complex piece of work. One of its most interesting sections is that of the river, which spans a remarkable ten minutes in the movie.
First of all, as the children manage to escape Preacher, the latter lets out a primal, animalistic howl of rage. However, in the next part of the river sequence, we see the river and the nature which surrounds it act as protectors to John and Pearl as they smoothly drift down: Figure 2: The river scene Later still, after John realizes Preacher is on their heels, the children rush back to their skiff.
At that point, the river is no longer idle, and we can see more violent currents have appeared. Afterwards, once they are on their way, the score and the river becomes calmer once more, but keeps undertones of threat as it uses a faster tempo than in the beginning of the river scene. In a similar fashion, the score uses a waltz as a theme for Willa and later on Ruby, in this case symbolizing physical desire, naivety and a certain instability.
From that point on, the waltz turns fully sardonic as the scene of the wedding night turns into a parody of a courtship scene: Willa is coy and playful, and Preacher extends his hand to her as if he were inviting her to dance. It turns out he only wants her to shut a blind, and then he proceeds to shaming her for being lustful.
(PDF) Music in The Night of the Hunter | Chloé Marino - cittadelmonte.info
The scene climaxes with the two themes escalating to a fevered pitch as Preacher kills his wife. The last time the waltz is used in relation to Willa is when we finally see her corpse below the water. It is in that moment that the waltz is at its most ironic and becomes the mockery of life which had inspired Cortez in the first place. Furthermore, the waltz sounds muted as it matches the underwater scenery, where noises are dimmer than on the surface.
Figure 3: Willa's corpse The songs which were composed especially for the movie also play this part. Since they were integrant parts of the script, the two songs were written before the beginning of the shoot Jones , and Schumann asked Grubb to write the lyrics in a hurry Jones In the movie, she sings it. The result is effectively eerie and perfectly matches the otherworldly atmosphere of the river scene, while also providing a springboard for the score, as it is the instrumental version of that song which is used all throughout the scene afterwards.
Moreover, it is the musical equivalent of the numerous stories told during the movie.
Those stories subconsciously remind the audience of the fairytale-like structure of the work, and all of them relate to the tale of the children themselves: The story stands out among the others and provides a lyrical, beautiful summary of the narrative as seen through the eyes of a child.
The melody to that song is the one used in the opening sequence of the movie where Rachel quotes the Bible, and thus has already been marked as a positive, comforting song for children.
Here, it sounds as if a mother is singing her child to sleep, while John and Pearl only see the silhouette of the woman through the Chinese shadow of a bird. That song might have two different, almost contrary effects Couchman Once more, the music in the movie is very complex and open to multiple interpretations. At least, it is until the dogs start barking and we hear Preacher singing his hymn. Figure 4: The barn scene The function of the hymn is multiple. It proves Powell considers himself to be righteous and religious, and is not simply a one-dimensional character.
Nonetheless, the hymn is also used ironically since the person singing it acts as a representation of the devil and is the evil force against which good must fight. Preacher sings the hymn for the first time when the children are seen going to sleep.
Thus, since the audience knows he is a murderer, the songs which seems to sing the children to sleep immediately marks them as the principal victims of the phony priest. This is an impressive achievement considering the characters themselves have not even met yet. At that point, while Preacher sings, the latter are hiding from him in the cave, which proves that they or at least John have associated his singing to imminent danger.
The words might be comforting and reassuring, but the boy knows they are here to hide evil. Preacher sings the hymn twice more after that: Yet, this last time is very different as Rachel soon joins him. The metaphorical battle between good and evil which has been the subject of the film finally becomes material in the shape of a song. The two visions of religion, one right, one clearly distorted, are opposed, and Rachel is the one who seems to win.
Figure 5: Nonetheless, it is not the only way the music appears as more than a simple accompaniment to the images on screen. It also uses the cinematography and its effects and compliments them so as to make them more effective, and even serves as a way to subvert what the images show the audience.
III- Music and cinematic style a Music as a way to emphasize what is on the screen The music of The Night of the Hunter is also very interesting in the way it relates with the cinematic elements shown onscreen. The main reason why those effects are there is because they emphasize the meaning of the action as well as of the characters. Thus, the music, the role of which is always multiple in the picture, needs to complement those stylistic effects so as to reveal even more significance.
We will see that it matches and emphasizes those effects, but that it can also subvert what is shown on the screen. It does so in several instances, and this from the very beginning of the movie, as the opening sequence is a very good example of this.
Here, the cinematic effects are clearly meant to warn the audience of the threat Preacher is going to represent.
However, the opening would be much less effective were it not for the music. Furthermore, the sequence is an embodiment of the title of the movie, which appears while the musical theme plays: This process also conditions the audience to associate the music to something frightening and dark, leading them to instantly be wary of Preacher when he appears on screen.
However, the opening sequence does not end there. Her position makes her link with God evident, and establishes her goodness. This is helped by the comforting song. Here, the night turns into something safe, where children, who are coincidently also shown, can dream and sleep without fear.
It presents the two main adult characters of the play who represent evil and good, while also anticipating the final struggle between the two. It is also a visual and musical representation of how the movie is going to play out: Figure 6: Rachel and the children in the opening scene of the movie The device of music emphasizing a scene does not stop with the opening part of the movie. The next cut shows a rolling train from the side.
Then that image fades, and we are back to the two women arguing.
The scene ends with another image of the train, this time seen from the back. In this scene, the cuts, which are done quickly enough, are meant to emphasize the arrival of the threat that is Preacher. The train is first seen from the side so that, when we see it a second time, we realize it has gotten much closer. Furthermore, the fact that the second time it is seen from the front not only makes it more impressing, but also gives the impression that the train is coming right at us and is going to violently collide with us.
What is interesting is how the music is used in this passage. During the first part of the conversation between the two women, there is no music at all, giving the sequence a neutral tone.
Indeed, the second time we hear the women talk, we can make out a very discreet string instrumental string play in the background. Those are not the only instances in which the music enhances the visual effects of the movie, but they are without question among the most striking of them.
‘The Night of the Hunter’: The Extraordinary Single Directorial Entry in Charles Laughton’s Career
At several points in the movie, the music does not fill the purpose of making what is happening even more evident; on the contrary, it belies what the audience is showed and subverts it. The scene was shot by Stanley Cortez so that the bedroom would look very small and resemble the shape of the nave of a church, and with very few lights so that the shadows would be even more enhanced Jones However, the music, at first, does not seem to fit the scene at all.
As we have seen before, the use of the waltz in this scene was a very deliberate choice made by Cortez and Laughton; and while it does emphasize the themes of the movie, it is definitely at odds with the visual aspects of the passage. A waltz suggests happiness, but more than anything it suggests movement. Most of the shots are static, which gives an impression of confinement and claustrophobia, which is at odds with the ever-moving music.
The characters themselves are not very mobile. Willa is lying on her bed, and looks upward throughout. Thus, the music belies what is shown on screen, and discountenances the viewer who loses his or her usual markers. The score is not the only subversion of what is happening on screen: The whole village reunites to have a picnic, and the scene embodies the spirit of community by showing the crowd singing Bringing in the Sheaths, a traditional American religious hymn.
Unlike most of the first part of the movie, the deep darkness and white and black contrasts are abandoned in favor of a more natural light where grey dominates.
While the song may seem appropriate to the scene, a closer look — and listening — reveals that it is actually used in an ironic way. The song is proof of that: Preacher and Willa singing Binging in the Sheaths This could not have been achieved had the method Charles Laughton used during the shoot been any different than it was.
It is the powerful collaboration of the director with composer Walter Schumann which enabled the latter to compose a score that was perfectly adapted to what was shown onscreen.
Cortez later stated that, apart from The Magnificent Ambersons , this film was his most exciting experience in Hollywood, at the same time giving a huge compliment to the director, saying Laughton and Welles were the only directors he ever worked with that really understood the power and subtleties of light and its usage in film. A monumentally important screenplay. For educational and research purposes only.
Absolutely our highest recommendation. The film has been cited among critics as one of the best of the s, and has been selected by the United States National Film Registry for preservation in the Library of Congress. At the time of its original release, however, it was a critical and box-office failure, and Laughton never directed again. Open YouTube video.
I understand Mr. Kubrick is saying that Barry Lyndon is the first feature to shoot scenes with nothing but the light from some candles, but actually our scene with just one candle was the first. Anyway, the sensitivity on the Tri-X was faster than on the filmstock we were used to using. I used it on The Night of the Hunter not because of the technical phase but strictly for its dramatic properties. I wanted those deep blacks, because I felt that it would give me an added dramatic punch in there when a sequence called for it.
Gregory scooped up the book for his business partner, Charles Laughton, who had been looking for a property to direct. I would love to direct this. Lillian Gish in The Night of the Hunter.