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The Third Man

Anton Karas

Carol Reed’s classic film noir – winner of the 1949 Cannes Film Festival -- stars Joseph Cotton as an American novelist who arrives in post-WWII Vienna to take a job with his friend Harry Lime (Orson Welles), only to discover that Harry has apparently died under mysterious circumstances.

Boasting one of the most famous and unconventional film scores of all time,
The Third Man stands as a classic example of a movie almost singlehandedly defined by its music, the work of Viennese zither master Anton Karas, a virtual unknown prior to the film’s release. From the spry, springy main title – a chart-topping hit in 1949 – to more romantic, melancholic tracks like "Anna Walks Away " and an assortment of main title variations, Karas’ music acts as kind of wry dramatic counterpoint to the film’s dark, shadowy style – mischievous yet knowing, always a step ahead of the audience, at times beguiling, elsewhere taunting, but always cheerily, eerily dancing circles around its tangled web of secrets.
The Third Man
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