POTD: Neo-Noir

Budapest, Hungary

In writing yesterday’s post I mentioned gothic horror films, which lead me to doing a little reading about them on the internet where I found the photo below from the 1920’s horror film Nosferatu. That photo reminded me of the photo above that I took of Zippy going down the stairs of our apartment building the other night.

But I don’t associate Budapest with gothic horror films as much as I do those of the film noir genre. It is dark here–a lot. And I think Budapest has a love affair with sparsely placed low-wattage light bulbs. While there are occasional well lit spots, even the busiest of streets are very dark by American standards and the side streets even darker, as are many public spaces in building interiors and courtyards.

Our building (the stray graffiti in the photo not withstanding) is a fairly typical mid-quality apartment building, but after dark looks like the perfect setting for some cold-war spy drama. In fact I suppose it could have been just that given the history of the city. It’s a good thing the crime rate here is very low or being out amongst the shadows at night would make me very nervous. As it is, I just enjoy going out and pretending the city is one big neo-noir film set.

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