Film Formally

S2E01 - Fail Safe and Contrast

September 22, 2020

We kick off our second season talking about one of our favourite films, Fail Safe, and its extraordinary use of contrast not just as an aesthetic, but as the guiding philosophy behind the whole film. Sidney Lumet’s nuclear thriller employs endless contrasts: between dark and light, fast and slow, loud and quiet, abstraction and realism, and the life and death contrasts of nuclear war and its ideologies. All this contrast adds up to a one-of-a-kind nail-biting experience, and we’re here to walk you through how so much of the film’s construction centers on that one unifying concept.

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