A film loved by many, including but not limited to Anthony Bourdain and Koushun Takami, The Third man is a timeless film that has transcended generations and become one of the most respected British film of all time. I remember the first time I saw it 17 years ago, it was a rainy Thursday afternoon and I was forced to watch it in school. It drew me in then and it still pulls me in now. It is quintessential film noir and has one of cinemas most memorable pieces of music. The Third Man tells the tale of Pulp novelist Holly Martins, who travels to shadowy postwar Vienna only to find himself investigating the mysterious death of an old friend, black-market opportunist Harry Lime.
I sat back and watched this on my projector and it was stunning, the film has some of best cinematography I have ever seen, which really says something since it was released in 1949. The Third Man has this strange atmospheric feel to it, at times you will genuinely feel like you’re alone walking the streets of beautiful post war Vienna. Even when it’s finished you will probably want to fly there yourself and as soon as you land probably mutter the words : ‘ I never knew the old Vienna before the war with its Strauss music, it’s glamour and easy charm. Constantinople suited me better.’
Usually for films I will act as a herald screaming from the roof tops because I was there first but sadly this film preceded me by nearly 66 years, but that in itself proves how great this picture is. Think about it, a film from 1949, about a murder mixed in with a few blasts and the political absurdity of post war Europe, a few strokes of humor and a little philosophy can still speak to its audience. This film transcends time and that’s why I’m telling you all to get the remastered version and give it a watch, you will not be disappointed as it’s hauntingly beautiful.
The film will be released on DVD and Blu-Ray in a new collector’s edition on 20 July (UK) that will include more extras material than any previous version.