Tim Bergfelder
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German cinema and film noir
in European film noir
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This chapter focuses on two questions that have so far been neglected in film historical studies, namely whether there was any reciprocal influence of American noir in the post-war German context, and whether one can identify an indigenous noir tradition in post-Second World War German cinema. It also focuses on a number of noir archetypes - the war veteran, the femme fatale, and the figure of the serial killer. In acknowledging similarities between postwar German cinema and film noir, as well as noting significant differences, the critical discourse of noir helps sharpen our understanding of a genre's cultural and historical determinants without losing sight of prior, parallel or subsequent developments. Apart from the femme fatale, the psychopathic serial killer is of course another iconic figure linking late Weimar cinema and film noir.

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