The Film Noir Recipe


Hello analogue cinematographer! Always wanted to shoot a genre piece with your LomoKino but didn’t know where to start? Take a look at the list of key elements for Film Noir we put together below and get ready to wind those cranks!

Credits: alexroarsatlyons

The Film Noir genre has a set of identifying characteristics which help categorise it. We put together a distilled list so that you and your LomoKino can slip into it like a pro. Here they are.

Visual Style

Black-and-white cinematography is considered by many to be one of the essential attributes of classic noir. So before you start winding those LomoKino cranks, let us suggest you stock up on
Lady Grey.

Many classic film noirs are associated with stark light/dark contrasts and dramatic shadow patterning. The shadows of Venetian blinds for example are an iconic visual characteristic of the Film Noir genre.

Credits: theresia & slumbrnghok

Film noir frequently include shots of people reflected in one or more mirrors, shots through curved or frosted glass or other distorting objects. Characters’ faces are also often partially or wholly obscured by darkness.

Credits: byron, floting & ejipaulbush

Setting and Locations

In noirs there will always be a scene at night and it also always rains at some point. The genre is often associated with an urban setting, and a few cities—Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, and Chicago, in particular—are the location of many of the classic films. If you’re nowhere near these cities, however, you can always opt for your local city centre as a substitute. Alternatively, you could get artistic and make your own set or backdrop.

Credits: grazie, trw & tommynorth

Bars, lounges, nightclubs, and gambling dens are frequently the scene of action. Whilst the climax of a substantial number of film noirs often takes place in industrial settings such as refineries, factories, train yards or power plants.

Credits: t0m7 & bccbarbosa

Structure and Narrational Devices

Film noirs frequently involve flashbacks. Voiceover narration came to be seen as a noir hallmark.


Film noir tends to have a tragic or bleak conclusion. Crime, usually murder, is an element of almost all film noirs. A crime investigation is the most basic element of the plot.

Enter a new analogue dimension with the LomoKino. Lomography’s own 35mm analogue movie camera allows you to capture action and immortalize your story on film! Shoot 144 frames on any 35mm film and create your own cinematic masterpieces. Want to watch your movie the old-school way? We also offer the LomoKino and LomoKinoscope package!

written by shhquiet on 2013-03-27 #lifestyle #film #35mm #black-white #movie #film-noir #lomokino

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