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It seems to me that this question and the replies posted to it highlight once again the problematic status of noir.  Respondents note the presence of noir elements in the film but in the absence of a definitive set of criteria for what constitutes a film noir, the same could be said for most of the films which comprise the various versions of the noir canon: they all have some of the elements of noir in them but its difficult to find the same combination of these elements in any group of the films and even if you could, would you not then be practising such a high degree of selectivity that you would be precluded from generalising beyond the very small group of films chosen for study?
I'm having similar problems with Notorious at the moment.  Borde and Chaumeton class it as noir and the film is discussed in some (but not all) of the subsequent literature on noir, but only peripherally.  Like Shadow it has some noir elements, but does this justify calling it noir?

Mike Chopra-Gant
Media and Communications Dept.
Goldsmiths College London

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