WRITERS ON SCREEN: THE THIRD MAN – The Question of a Happy Ending, Pt 3

Get That Dead Guy Out of the Swimming Pool

I’m just a hack writer who drinks and falls in love with girls.”Holly Martins in The 3rd Man

 I’m trying to figure out if writing pulp Westerns made writer Holly Martins, the hapless sentimental sap he is in the movie The Third Man or if his golly-gee Americanism is merely a by-product of the mid-20th century white middle class American upbringing. Maybe he was just born that way, at any rate he’s no match for the down and out dame, Anna, former squeeze of our boy in Vienna Harry Lime.Welles3

All through the film Martins carries a torch for this babe that is as big as the Statue of Liberty’s, but she’s not into him at all. She’s a member of The Women Who Love Men Who Are Assholes Club and her dues are paid up in perpetuity. Still, Martins insist on clinging steadfastly to denial.


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