In and Of the World: The Textures of Michael’s Mann’s "Heat"

  • MUBI
Michael Mann's Heat (1995) is showing November 11 - December 11, 2017 on Mubi in the United Kingdom.Neil McCauley (Robert De Niro) emerges from a train with unassuming poise, mingling seamlessly with the other disembarking passengers. As they recede into the background, however, congealing into airy circular blurs of out-of-focus features, Neil becomes the obvious point of attention, even more so as the camera pulls back and follows his journey from a comparative distance. In the guise of a medic, he makes his way to a hospital and coasts through its thoroughfares, passing oblivious employees and patients, until he arrives at his destination: an ambulance, which he steals. Neil’s anonymity enabled the theft and it allowed for his inconspicuous progress. He fit in. He seemed natural. Wherever he went, he had the perceptible appearance of belonging. This is key to what distinguishes Heat, Michael Mann’s 1995 contemporary crime masterpiece. Capitalizing on
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