Touch of Evil
February 26, 2016
9:30 - 11:30 PM
1958, United States, Orson Welles, 111 min.
With Charlton Heston, Orson Welles, and Janet Leigh
Introduced by journalist Phil Zabriskie.
Orson Welles’s Touch of Evil, his last Hollywood movie, dissects the nature of good and evil in a hallucinatory, nightmarish ambience, helped by the shadow-laden cinematography of Russell Metty. On honeymoon with his new bride Susan (Leigh), Mexican-born policeman Mike Vargas (Heston) agrees to investigate a bomb explosion. In so doing he incurs the wrath of local police chief Hank Quinlan (Welles), a corrupt, bullying behemoth with a perfect arrest record.
“The movie begins with one of the most famous shots ever made, following a car with a bomb in its trunk for three minutes and twenty seconds. And it has other virtuoso camera movements, including an unbroken interrogation in a cramped room, and one that begins in the street and follows the characters through a lobby and into an elevator. The British critic Damian Cannon writes of its ‘spatial choreography,’ in which ‘every position and movement latches together into a cogent whole.’” —Roger Ebert, September 13, 1998
About Cabaret Cinema
For the Museum’s classic film series, renowned photographer Steve McCurry selected eight films that have influenced the way he looks at light, color, form, and narrative. Journalists and photographers will introduce each film and relate it to one of McCurry’s photographs in the new exhibition Steve McCurry: India.
About the Speaker
Phil Zabriskie was formerly a staff writer for Time magazine based in Asia and now lives in New York. He has written for National Geographic, National Geographic Adventure, New York Magazine, and others. He is the writer of the Kindle Single The Kill Switch, in which he interviews combat veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars and asks them to talk about something most combat veterans don’t like talking about: what it’s like to kill another human being.
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