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Luckylyn

Breaking Down The Shot

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@xaxat shared this awesome breakdown of Micheal Bay's film style.

 

It gave me an idea for a thread focusing on discussing certain shots, film styles, cinematography, editing, camera movement, digital vs. film etc...

 

All genres a welcome for discussion.

 

I remember a critic talking about the lack of stillness in a Micheal Bay movie.  The shots are quick and there's always movement.  If the actor isn't moving than the camera is.  It's constant stimulation.

 

I really  hate how fights are shot in the Bourne movies because the camera moves too much.  I feel like I can't see what's going on.  I have respect for good fight choreography and so it bugs me the Bourne films won't let me actually properly see the fight.  Are they hiding bad fight choreography or is it supposed to be more interesting shot in that chaotic way?

 

I just want the camera to stay still so I can better absorb what I'm looking at.

 

 

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Rope.  The whole film is shot as if it was all one take.  Hitchcock managed to hide scene cuts, so it wasn't all done in one shot, but it looks that way.

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I really  hate how fights are shot in the Bourne movies because the camera moves too much.  I feel like I can't see what's going on.  I have respect for good fight choreography and so it bugs me the Bourne films won't let me actually properly see the fight.  Are they hiding bad fight choreography or is it supposed to be more interesting shot in that chaotic way?

 

I just want the camera to stay still so I can better absorb what I'm looking at.

 

I think Doug Liman shot the first film, and there wasn't that shaky cam stuff.  I believe we have Paul Greengrass to thank for that, and for influencing other filmmakers to imitate the style. 

Edited by ribboninthesky1

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The edits in Rope aren't noticeable.  Speaking of Hitchcock he had a crane specially built so he could do that shot in Notorious where starts at the top of the stairs and zooms down to the key in Ingrid Bergman's hand.

 

I have to mention the single tracking shot at the beginning of Touch of Evil.

 

Goodfellas has that amazing single Steadicam shot.

 

Serenity has a one shot opening with I think only one edit that isn't noticeable.  They were forced to do the edit since different parts of the ship were on different sets.

 

I have a ton of respect for camera men and actors who can pull off those long tracking shots.  One error and they have to start over.  I love directors who are willing to do it.

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A long but insightful and often very funny lecture by Garrett Brown, the inventor of the steadicam who also operated it on many major films like the Rocky movies, The Shining, Return of the Jedi, etc.

 

Edited by VCRTracking

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Alfonso Cuaron went crazy with long, one-take shots in Children of Men.  Here's a small documentary on how he did it (about 7 minutes):

 

 

This is the car scene:

 

 

And here's the bomb scene:

 

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And the part during the car scene where blood splattered on the camera was an accident they decided to keep!

 

At San Diego Comic-Con, during Warner Bros presentation of Gravity in Hall H, the Mexican auteur revealed how the shot almost didn’t happen. He explained that, over the course of the 12 days they took to film that scene, they kept missing it again and again. There were accidents, problems with the location, and the camera operator fell down. Finally, on the final day, during one attempt Cuarón yelled, “Cut,” because fake blood spattered on the camera. But no one heard him because of all the explosions and gunfire, so the production kept going. This was the take that ended up in final film. He calls the blood splash a “miracle.”

 

 

http://www.giantfreakinrobot.com/scifi/alfonso-cuarn-calls-iconic-scene-children-men-happy-accident.html

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Here's an in-depth analysis of Michael Bay's main trick, why it works even when everything around it sucks, and when it doesn't: 

Edited by Jamoche

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That was in the very first post.

Oops :) Embedded videos are kind of flaky, most of this thread is big white space for me - even the one I added.

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Tom Hooper's style: Love it? or Hate it? I first noticed his odd framing choices and frequent use of close ups shot with a wide angle lens in The King's Speech("Why are they showing so much wallpaper?") I didn't really mind at the time because it kept it from looking like the typical Masterpiece Theater period piece. When Les Miserables that's when everybody started commenting on it. I think it works in scenes like Anne Hathaway's big moment as Fantine singing "I Dreamed a Dream", but the rest of the movie it's overused.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SyQ-0JOF1Qk

Edited by VCRTracking

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I love this line about color grading:

 

For the life of my family, I can't fucking figure out why anyone would want to watch a movie that's filtered to look like someone refusing to remove their Ray-Bans.

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A look at the shooting and editing of Mad Max, with video. The short version, he put the most important thing in each shot right in the centre, and moved the camera to keep it there. Right where people are looking. Nifty idea, I hope it catches on.

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I think Doug Liman shot the first film, and there wasn't that shaky cam stuff.  I believe we have Paul Greengrass to thank for that, and for influencing other filmmakers to imitate the style. 

I think you're correct about that, because one thing I distinctly remember liking about the first Bourne movie is how you can see all the action easily - the fight scene with the pen is particularly well-shot.  

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I think Doug Liman shot the first film, and there wasn't that shaky cam stuff.  I believe we have Paul Greengrass to thank for that, and for influencing other filmmakers to imitate the style.

He did. I liked the sequels but I prefer Liman's style. 

Edited by Oreo2234
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I just saw this fantastic analysis of the Ava sessions in Ex Machina. Don't watch if you haven't seen it yet because there are a lot of spoilers.

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Great analysis, awesome movie, by three talented actors.  Alex Garland is currently working on Annihilation, starring Natalie Portman, Oscar Isaac, Gina Rodriguez, and Jennifer Jason Leigh (and Tessa Thompson, with whom I fell in love in Creed).

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A.I. Artificial Intelligence - the significance of Teddy (film analysis) - spoilers, I always think one of the reasons this movie seems disliked is that David is not rootable but is quite disturbing. 

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Analysis of After Hours.  It's such a wonderful but odd film.

@Silver Raven posted this great analysis of directing technique in comedies

Edited by Luckylyn

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I think the source material (comic book) helped, but there was a ton of visual comedy in Scott Pilgrim. Some of my favorite scenes were the ones that had a visual punchline for a joke.

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Analysis of the editing in Suicide Squad

 

I wanted to recommend Chez Lindsay's youtube page.  She's done a ton of analysis of various movies and film topics.  She's currently in the middle of an analysis of the Transformers franchise.

Edited by Luckylyn
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5 hours ago, Silver Raven said:

The Film Theorists (which I highly recommend, excellent channel) discusses Robert Zemeckis's blocking in Back to the Future.

 

Really interesting.    I also appreciated what they said about a director who knows how to use the actors body language to convey information and not just relying on dialogue.  

 

It made me think of the movie The Big Chill where there are multiple scenes where body language is used really elequently. 

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On 5/20/2017 at 10:58 AM, Luckylyn said:

I wanted to recommend Chez Lindsay's youtube page.  She's done a ton of analysis of various movies and film topics.  She's currently in the middle of an analysis of the Transformers franchise.

This is my favorite of her Transformers posts (so far). For anyone that is interested in why Bay's action scenes are so confusing and forgettable.

 

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Game of Thrones  - How to Evoke Emotion

 

Ex Machina — The Control of Information (good exploration of showing vs. telling and creative exposition)

Edited by Luckylyn

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This video captures my issues with shaky cam, fast cut action sequences

 

I really appreciated the fight choreography and how it was filmed in John Wick

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Vanity Fair has a series called "Notes on a Scene"  They have a variety of behind the scenes people (directors, costume designers, stunt coordinators, etc.) breaking down a single scene.  

Here's one with the delightful Taika Waititi.  Also, potential spoiler alert for Thor: Ragnarok.

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