Character Lighting (Roz Dean)
Film Noir isn’t a pretty watch, it makes the viewer feel intentionally uncomfortable. The audio and the lighting play a key part in this. As DOP my duty is to create this unnerving feel to the film.
The visual style should reflect the characters and their motives. Our femme fatale, Maddy, will have her own lighting. First she will appear well lit, innocent a softbox to give her a romantic blur, a sparkle in her eyes.
As her character shift through the film and the audience learn of her betrayal, the lighting changes angle, dark shadows creep across her face. She is not the delicate creature we were mistaken to believe at the beginning. Similar to The Killers directed by Robert Siodmak, were the femme fatale Kitty follows the money.
With Johnny a the technique is reversed, he begins as a dark character, a lot of shadow will be cast on his face.
As the position of the characters begin to change Johnny becomes the unaware victim. The light will reflect his stupidity.
Similar to Detour, directed by Edgar G. Ulmer were the main character Al finds himself in a compromising position and is blackmailed by the femme fatale, Vera.