If you're going to argue that black and white is inherently superior to color, how can you call Halloween trash, while ignoring Night Of The Living Dead (the scariest film ever made), and claim that Dracula (whose audiences laughed even in 1931) is a wonderful horror film?
And how can you ignore Hitchcock, whose best work was done in Vistavision color? Mind you, I love The 39 Steps, The Lady Vanishes, and Suspicion, but they're mere shadows of North By Northwest, Rear Window, and the best film the man ever made, Vertigo. Psycho, the only film Stefan Kanfer mentions here, doesn't rank with any of them. The most memorable thing about Psycho isn't its cinematography (well, that's pretty memorable, especially the shower scene and Martin Balsam on the stairs and the last shot, and the wiper blades, and yes Hitchcock was a genius, anyway) – it's Bernard Herrmann's musical score.
How can you ignore French films, where Godard, Truffaut, and Kieslowski, not to mention a hundred directors I've never seen, probably did work in color every bit as good as Renoir in black and white? How do you bypass a discussion of the merits of Ran, which is beauty in cinematography, versus Seven Samurai, where the strength is in the cast?
How do you discuss great black and white musicals and dance films while ignoring Singin' In The Rain and mentioning The Producers (the Zero Mostel original, not Broderick) only in passing?
If you're going to cite westerns, how do you ignore The Wild Bunch, The Searchers, and Unforgiven? How do you pretend they were never made? And how do you ignore action and science fiction films (Blade Runner, 2001: A Space Odyssey, and The Empire Strikes Back are among the best films, period) entirely?
Mind you, there's a lot to chew on in this ode to black and white, from a site I quite enjoy. And there's a lot to like. I'm only blogging about this piece because it did provoke some thoughts, even if the thesis is entirely wrong.
He does have a point about comedy, but the reasons that The Bank Dick and early Marx Brothers films were the funniest ever made, even funnier than Mel Brooks in his prime, have nothing to do with color or lack thereof. It's because W.C. Fields and the Marxes were doing their best work when color was impossible and exotic.