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Dark City (1998 film)
                                     

★ Dark City (1998 film)

Dark city 1998 neo-Noir, sci-Fi Director Alex Proyas starring Rufus Sewell, Kiefer Sutherland, Jennifer Connelly, and William hurt. The screenplay was written by Proyas, LEM Dobbs, David S. Goyer. Sewell plays John Murdoch, an amnesiac man who finds himself suspected of murder. Murdoch attempts to discover his true identity and clear his name while on the run from the police and a mysterious group known only as "foreign".

Most of the film was shot on Fox studios in Australia. American and Australian production, it was produced jointly by new line cinema and mystery clock cinema. New line cinema distributed the film version. The film premiered in the USA on 27 February 1998. The film was nominated for "Hugo" and the award "Saturn". For the theatrical release, the Studio was concerned that the audience did not understand the film and asked Proyas to add an explanatory voice-over introduction. Directors cut was released in 2008, restoring and preserving Proyass original artistic vision of the film. Some critics have noted its similarity and influence on the matrix series, which was released a year later.

                                     

1. The plot. (Сюжет)

John Murdoch wakes in a hotel bathtub, suffering from amnesia. He gets a phone call from Dr. Daniel Schreber, who urges him to flee the hotel to avoid a group of men who are after him. In the room, Murdoch discovers the corpse of a ritually murdered along with a bloody knife. He leaves the stage as the group of pale men in trench coats later identified as "foreign" here.

Following the instructions, Murdoch knows his name and learns that he has a wife named Emma, he is also sought by police inspector Frank Bumstead as a suspect in a series of murders committed in the vicinity of the city, although he cant remember killing anyone. Pursued by the strangers, Murdoch discovers that he has psychokinesis that outsiders are also called "tuning": the ability to change reality at will. He can use these powers to escape from them.

Murdoch explores the anachronism of the city where no one seems to understand that it is always night. At midnight, he sees all but himself asleep, as strangers to physically change a city and change peoples identity and historical memory. Murdoch learns that he came from a coastal town called shell beach: a city familiar to everyone, although no one knows how to get there, and all his attempts to do this failed for various reasons. Meanwhile, the strangers inject one of their men, Mr. hand, with memories intended for Murdoch in an attempt to predict his movements and find him.

Murdoch is eventually caught by inspector Bumstead, who recognizes that Murdoch is most likely innocent, and then his own fears about the nature of the city. They oppose Schreber, who explains that the aliens are aliens that use corpses as their hosts. Having collective intelligence, the aliens are experimenting with humans to analyze their individuality in the hope that the story can be revealed that would help their race survive.

Schreber shows that Murdoch is an anomaly who inadvertently woke up when Schreber was in the middle of imprinting his latest identity as a killer. The three embark to find shell beach, but it exists only in the form of a poster on the wall at the very edge of the city. Of frustration, Murdoch and Bumstead to break through the wall, revealing outer space. Men, when faced with strangers, including Mr. hand, who holds Emma hostage. In the ensuing fight, Bumstead, and one of the strangers fall through a hole in space, showing the city as a habitat deep space, surrounded by a force field.

The strangers bring Murdoch to their home beneath the city and force Schreber to imprint Murdoch with their collective memory, believing Murdoch to be the culmination of their experiments. Schreber betrays them, instead, to introduce false memories in Murdoch which artificially reestablish his childhood as years spent training and honing their tuning skills and learning about the Strangers and their machines. Murdoch awakens, fully realizing his skills. He frees himself and battles with the strangers, defeating their leader Mr. book in a psychokinetic fight high above the city.

Having learned from Schreber that Emma has been re-printed and cannot be restored, Murdoch exercises his new features, enhanced other peoples machines to create an actual shell beach by flooding the area in a force field with water and forming mountains and beaches. On the way to shell beach, Murdoch encounters a dying Mr. hand and informs him that they were looking in the wrong place - the mind - to understand mankind. Murdoch turns into a habitat to the star was turned away, and the city is experiencing sunlight for the first time.

He opens the door leading out of the city and goes to watch the sunrise. For him-the Marina, where he finds the woman he knew as Emma, now with new memories and a new identity as Anna. Murdoch introduces himself as they walk to shell beach, beginning their relationship anew.

                                     

2. Casting. (Кастинг)

Alex Proyas based the strangers on Richard OBriens character in a horror show rocky Horror, riff raff. Proyas said, "I Have Richard in mind physically when I wrote the character, because I had such a strange, bald men with an ethereal, androgynous quality." When Proyas visited London to cast for the film, he met with obrien and found him suitable for this role.

Kiefer Sutherlands character Daniel P. Schreber Daniel Paul Schreber is named after a German judge who suffers from narcissistic, paranoid psychosis and possibly schizophrenia and whose autobiographical memoirs of my nervous illness Denkwurdigkeiten people Nervenkranken movies plot hints in different instances. Hurt was originally asked to play Dr. Schreber.

                                     

3. Analysis. (Анализ)

Theologian Gerard loughlin interpreterpath Dark city as a retelling of platos allegory of the cave. For loughlin, the city inhabitants prisoners who do not realize that they are in prison. John Metacam escape from the prison Parallels the escape from the cave in the allegory. He has the help of Dr. Schreber, who explains the mechanism of the city, as Socrates explains to Glaucon how the shadows in the cave are cast. Murdoch however becomes more than Glaucon, loughlin writes, "he is a Glaucon who comes to realize that Socrates, the tale of an upper, more real world, is itself a shadow, a forgery." Murdoch defeats the strangers who control the inhabitants and reinvents the world based on childhood memories, which are themselves illusions, organized by strangers. Loughlin writes of the lack of background, "the origin of the city behind the scenes, unknown and unknowable". Murdoch now casts new shadows for the city inhabitants, who must trust his judgment. Unlike Plato, Murdoch "is to get rid of any hope outside" and becomes the demiurge for the cave, only he knows.

City in dark city is described by Higley as a "dark, nightmarish German expressionist film Noir depiction of urban repression and mechanism". The citys world war II dreariness reminiscent of Edward hoppers works and has details from different eras and architectures that have changed others, "buildings will collapse and others emerge and battle with each other in the end." The round window in dark city is concave like a fishbowl, and this is often seen element throughout the city. Residents do not live in the upper part of the city, houses the main characters get lost among the Bricolage of buildings.

The film also contains motifs from Greek mythology, in which gods manipulate humans in a higher agenda. Proyas said, "I love Greek mythology and have read a little, so maybe something crept into his work, although I do not fully agree with this point of view."



                                     

4.1. Production. Effect. (Эффект)

The film Proyas referenced by Noir of the 1940s and 1950s such as "the Maltese Falcon" somehow affects the film. He was also described as Kafkaesque, and Proyas cited the TV series the twilight zone as a conscious influence. Proyas wanted to make the film, although nominally science fiction, theres an element of horror upset viewers.

                                     

4.2. Production. Write. (Писать)

Proyas co-wrote the screenplay with LEM Dobbs and David S. Goyer. Goyer wrote the crow: City of angels, the Sequel Proyass the 1994 film the crow, Proyas invited Goyer to co-write the screenplay for Dark city after reading Goyers script for blade, thats not out yet. The writers Guild of America initially protested at crediting more than two screenwriters for a film, but eventually relented and credited all three writers. Proyas originally conceived the story of the 1940s, detective, obsessed with facts and cannot solve a case where the facts do not make sense. "He slowly starts to go insane through the story," says Proyas. "He cant gather the facts because they dont add up to anything rational". In the process of creating the fictional world for the character of the detective, Proyas created other characters, shifting the focus of the film from the detective Bumstead person conducted by detective Murdoch. Proyas presented a credible narrative where the audience could examine the film from the point of view of several characters and focus on the story.

                                     

4.3. Production. Design. (Дизайн)

When Proyas finished his preceding film the crow in 1994, he approached production designer Patrick Tatopoulos to draw concepts of the world in which Dark city takes place. The city was built entirely on a set, there is no practical locations were used in the film. Tatopoulos described the city:

The film happens everywhere, and it is going nowhere. His city, built from parts of the city. Corner from one place, another somewhere else. So, you really dont know where you are. The piece will look like a street in London, but some of the architecture looks like new York, but the bottom of the architecture looks like a European city. You are, but you dont know where you are. It every time you travel, youll be lost.

Production design included themes of darkness, spiral, and hours. There seems to be no sun in the center of the world, and spiral designs that shrink when approached were used in the film. A major clock in the film shows no hours, Tatopoulos said, "but in a magical moment it becomes something more than just a watch". Production designer created the city architecture to have an organic presence with the structural elements.

Strangers are energy beings who reside in dead human bodies. When design first began, the filmmakers considered the mistakes of others under him, but decided that the error was overloaded. Tatopoulos said Proyas wanted to make the strangers energy beings, "Alex called me and said that he wanted something like energy, which is stored re-powering itself, re-creating itself, re-shaping itself, sitting inside a dry piece of human shape." The strangers reside in a large underground amphitheater for their lair, where the bust of a man hides the big clock and the spiral of changes in the device layout of the city above. The set for the lair was fifty feet 15 meters in height, where the average set is thirty-six feet 11 meters. The lair set was built at the fair in Sydney, Australia. The films budget amounted to 30-40 million dollars, so the crew used inexpensive techniques to design the set, such as stretching canvas on welded metal frames. The lair of the railway carriage that appeared expensive. Tatopoulos said, "we had, obviously, built the car, but we only had one built. We laid some train to ride on. We did part of the corridor that we went through all the time and you end up believing that this thing is running along forever." Proyas originally wanted the car to roll into different rooms, which is not feasible for the budget, so Tatopoulos and the crew used "replaceable elements and strong design textures" to mimic the feel of different rooms.



                                     

4.4. Production. Soundtrack. (Саундтрек)

The films soundtrack was released on 24 Feb 1998 under the label of TVT records. Featuring music from the soundtrack, Trevor Jones, and versions of the songs "Sway" and "the Night has a thousand eyes" performed by singer Anita Kelsey. It also includes a music Hughes hall from the trailer, the song Echo and Bunnymen that was played over the final credits, as well as songs by Gary Numan and the course of Empire that did not appear in the film. Music for the film was edited by Simon Lidle and Jim Harrison.

                                     

5. Similarities with other works. (Сходство с другими произведениями)

The style of the films are often compared to the works of Terry Gilliam, especially Brazil. Some stylistic similarities also noted by Jean-Pierre Jeunet and Marc developers! film, 1995 the City of lost children, another film inspired particularly Gilliam presented the Jeunets and developers! previous film delicatessen in North America, another movie Jeunet and Caro, which was a conscious tribute to Gilliams style.

The matrix was released a year after Dark city and was also filmed at Fox studios in Sydney using some of the same sets. Comparisons have been made between scenes from the movies, to notice the similarities in both cinematography and atmosphere, as well as the plot.

Fritz langs 1927 movie metropolis was a major influence on the film, shown through architecture, concepts of the baseness of people in the metropolis, and General tone. In one of the documentaries shown on the cut of Directors, said the impact of the early German films m and Nosferatu are.

One of the last scenes of the film, in which buildings "restore" themselves, similar to the last panel of the Akira manga. Proyas called the end battle of "honor Otomos Akira ". Dark city also carried out a comparison with films anime Urusei Yatsura 2: Beautiful dreamer 1984 and 1985 Megazone 23, and video game 1993 the gadget invention, travel and adventure.

When Christopher Nolan first started thinking about writing a script to create, he was influenced by "that era of movies where you had the matrix, you had Dark city, you had the thirteenth floor and, to a certain extent, you remember too. They were founded on the principles that the world around you cant be real."

                                     

6. Release. (Релиз)

Dark city titled Dark world and dark Empire leading up to the films release. The Company Warner Bros. planned the filmmakers to consider other names due to the release of the same title Mad city in the same time frame, but Dark city was ultimately saved as the final name. The film was originally scheduled to be released in theaters on October 17, 1997 and it was later scheduled for January 9, 1998. The film will premiere in theaters nationwide in the USA on 27 February 1998, 1.754 showing in cinemas.

                                     

7.1. Welcome Critical response. (Критическая реакция)

Among mainstream critics in the U.S., the film received generally positive reviews. Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reports that 76% of the 82 sampled critics gave the film a positive review, with an average score of 6.9 / 10 and the sites critical consensus stating: "stylishly gloomy, dark city, a polarization vortex of arrest visuals and noirish action." On the website Metacritic, which assigns a weighted average out of 100 to reviews from critics, the film received a score of 66 based on 23 reviews.

Roger Ebert wrote in the "Chicago sun times" called him "a great visionary achievement," at the same time exclaiming that it is "a film so original and exciting it stirred my imagination like metropolis and 2001: a Space Odyssey. "In the chronicle San Francisco, Peter stack wrote that the film was among the most memorable cinematic ventures in recent years" and that "maybe theres nothing wrong with the movie, which is simply pleasant to look at." He felt the films "twist the reality and its daring look - layered and off-kilter in the grey, green and black spots - make it click." In a mixed review, Walter Addiego of San Francisco examiner thought "as a story, Dark city doesnt amount to much." He believed that the Dark city contained a "complex area", as well as having important themes that were "nothing more than window dressing." But on the positive front, he wrote: "what is the main thing here is to show, creating a strange world of a filmmaker who clearly knows science fiction and fantasy, past and present, and wants to share his love for her."

Indifferent, Marc Savlov in the Austin Chronicle wrote, "you really have to feel for Alex Proyas. This guy wears bad luck like the grimy cloaks of his heroes, only his zippers stuck and he cant seem to shake the damn thing." In expressing his negativity, he believed "Dark city looks like a million bucks, or rather, a million bucks gone to compost, but at its dark heart it tedious, bewildering affair, lovely to look at, but with all the substance dissipates the dream." On the left is not less disappointed was John Anderson in the Los Angeles times. Commenting on the Director, he thought: "if you had to guess, you might say that Proyas came out of the world of comic art itself, and not music videos and advertising. Dark city is constructed like panels in a Batman Book, each picture striving for maximum fear." He went on to say, Proyas was trying simultaneously to create a pure Thriller and sci-Fi nightmare along with his tongue-in-cheek critique of artifice. And its not quite so good". Author TCH of time, felt the development of the Murdoch character was "surprisingly engrossing" and thought production wise, the "art direction is always striking, and unlike most contemporary sci-Fi and risk of cerebral approach, tapping the spirit of postmodern paranoia."

Writing for time, Richard Corliss said the film was "as cool and distant as the planet the strangers come from. But, Lord, is Dark city a wonder to see." James Berardinelli writing for ReelViews, remarked that "visually, this film is not just impressive, his Tour-de-force." and noted that Dark city opens by immersing the audience in the midst of a fractured, nightmarish narrative." Berardinelli also said Dark city appears to be new York during the first half of this century, however, using a style that is part science fiction, part Noir Thriller, and part Gothic horror, it was decorated to create a surreal place unlike no other." Describing some pitfalls, Jeff Vice of the Deseret News said that "when critics talk about films being style over substance, they certainly talked about movies like Dark city, which looks good but leaves an unpleasant aftertaste." Vice however was quick to admit, "the special effects and scenery are dazzling", but ultimately believed "Proyas makes the fatal mistake in treating the subject even more seriously than the Crow, and the dialogue in collaboration of Proyas and the crow: City of Angels scriptwriter David S. Goyer unintentionally funny at times, and often just plain stupid."

Andrea Basor of Newsweek, stated that Director Proyas flooded the screen with "cinematic and literary references ranging from Murnau and lang to Kafka and Orwell, creating a unique but totally convincing world". Similarly, David Sterritt wrote in the "Christian science Monitor" that "the story is dark and often cruel, but told with an amazing sense of visual energy and imagination." Additionally, Marshall fine of USA today, found the film to be "fascinating fantasy movie." and "with amber shade palette and a distinctly gloomy view of life, this may be the most unique weve seen in ages. defies logic and makes frightening and unexpected leaps". Critic Stephen Holden of the new York times wrote that the "plot that Dark city builds on Johns predicament is a confused affair" and that the movies premise is "unsettling enough to make you wonder if it might derail a seriously drug-addled mind."

Steve Biodrowski of cinefantastique found the production design and the cinematography overwhelming, but he considered the narrative engaging Sewells amnesiac character to be ultimately successful. Biodrowski writes: "the story progresses, the puzzle pieces will fall into place and we gradually realise that the film is not a murky blur visuals propping up a weak plot. All the questions lead to answers, and answers that make sense within the fantasy." The reviewer compared Dark city to the Directors previous film the crow in style but found Dark city to introduce new themes and to be a "more thoroughly consistent" film. Biodrowski concluded, Dark city may not provide exhaustive answers, but it deals seriously with a profound idea, and does it in such a way that its relaxing and even uplifting, without contrived or condescending. As a technical achievement, its great, and technology put at the service of telling the story that it would be difficult to implement in any other way."



                                     

7.2. Welcome Awards. (Награды)

The film won and was nominated for several awards in 1998. Film critic Roger Ebert called it the best film of 1998. In 2005, he included in his "great movies" list. Ebert used it in his teaching, as well as the comments for the original DVD and Directors cut 2006. The film was screened out of competition at the 1998 Cannes film festival.

                                     

7.3. Welcome The checkout. (Кассе)

Dark city premiered in theaters February 27, 1998 in wide release on 1.754 screens in the U.S. and raised $5.576.953 on the first weekend, placing 4th, far behind "Titanic" on the 1st place with $19.633.056. The revenue of the films decreased by 49.1% in its second week of release, earning $2.837.941, dropping to 9th, while the Titanic remained in first place with $17.605.849. The film went on to earn $14.378.331 in the domestic market in the total volume of ticket sales through a 4-week theatrical run. Internationally, the film took in an additional $12.821.985 at the box office business for a combined worldwide total of $27.200.316. Movies total gross is 105th in 1998.

                                     

8. Home media. (Домашний медиа)

The film was released in VHS video format on March 2, 1999. In the region 1 code widescreen edition of the film was released on DVD in the US on 29 July 1998. Special features for the DVD include two audio commentary tracks, one with film critic Roger Ebert and directed by Alex Proyas, LEM Dobbs and writers David Goyer, and production designer Patrick Tatopoulos. The DVD also includes Biographies, filmographies, comparisons to Fritz langs metropolis, set designs and theatrical trailer.

Directors cut of Dark city was also officially released on DVD and Blu-ray disc on July 29, 2008. Incision of Directors removes the opening narration which Proyas felt explained too much of the plot, and restores it to its original place in the film. It also includes 15 minutes of additional footage, mostly consisting of extended scenes with additional establishing shots and dialogue. Extended audio comments on Ebert, Proyas, Dobbs and Goyer, and several new documentaries. Blu-ray disc further includes the original theatrical version and especially with DVD-ROM 1998 release.

                                     
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