Questions tagged [cinematography]

Cinematography is the art or science of motion picture photography.

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How was 1917 filmed as a continuous shot?

I just saw the new Sam Mendes film 1917 and was really impressed with the continuous shot approach, especially given the setting in the trenches of WW1. I've seen this effect done before and know ...
sanpaco's user avatar
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44 votes
4 answers
14k views

How do they shoot binocular scenes?

How do they shoot binocular scenes? Do they put two cameras in binoculars? See this binocular vision from Ronin (1998):
Sheryl Pink's user avatar
44 votes
5 answers
10k views

What is this camera effect used in Hot Fuzz?

In this scene in Hot Fuzz (2007) the camera focuses on these two characters and rotates slowly, but the background rotates so fast. So what is this camera effect and how is it accomplished? Timeline ...
Necole Machesky's user avatar
39 votes
3 answers
31k views

How is dialog between two people filmed?

I was always wondering how dialog between two people is filmed. Suppose there are two people talking. The screen is switching between faces of the characters while they talk. How it is done in reality?...
zulunation's user avatar
38 votes
2 answers
1k views

Is there a rating of the 3D-ness of a 3D movie?

If things aren't thrown in my face during a 3D movie, I feel somewhat disappointed. I also appreciate the use of 3D to enhance a wide-angle shot, a humorous close-up, give a subtle sense of depth, and ...
lofidevops's user avatar
35 votes
1 answer
5k views

How are some scenes for movies shot especially for iPhone viewing?

In his recent appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Rami Malek discusses how certain scenes in No Time to Die (2021) were shot especially for the IMAX version. But he also mentioned that some are also shot ...
uhoh's user avatar
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32 votes
1 answer
8k views

Why are paused frames of DVDs blurry?

Sometimes when I pause DVDs the image is sharp, but in most cases, it is blurry. Obviously the film itself isn't blurry. Is the blurriness actually in the film strip or is it an artifact of the DVD ...
Tyler Durden's user avatar
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31 votes
1 answer
10k views

How did they film Danny tricycle riding through the hotel?

I am curious how the camera managed to maintain such a close distance to Danny riding his tricycle through the hotel in The Shining. The camera seems to be positioned on some wheeled cart that is ...
amphibient's user avatar
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29 votes
1 answer
6k views

Shots where the characters are small in relation to a still background: do these have a name?

I'm wondering if these shots have a name: shots where the character(s) is sitting or otherwise still and takes up only a small part of the screen, which is also still, i.e. the rest is pretty much a ...
zmike's user avatar
  • 608
28 votes
1 answer
5k views

Why was Kurosawa the first director to shoot the sun?

Akira Kurosawa is often credited as the first director to point his camera towards the sun in his film Rashomon (1950). Was this an artistic first, or was there some technical hurdle that Kurosawa was ...
System Down's user avatar
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27 votes
5 answers
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Meaning of a movie shot type with too little of a leadroom

Sometimes in movies a character is shown in an interesting way. It's usually shot from a side and he or she is facing the frame with little to none of a space between their nose and the edge of the ...
Vlad's user avatar
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24 votes
2 answers
4k views

What was the earliest mass-release movie that used Matrix-like "bullet time"?

One of the things that The Matrix was famous for was "bullet time" cinematography. I'm fairly sure that, while it was the first one to use the technique extensively and become famous for it, it wasn'...
DVK's user avatar
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22 votes
2 answers
4k views

History and reasoning behind average length of a feature film

I've personally always really enjoyed 'shorts', and always wondered why feature length films are the length they are, especially given my experience that most people's attention spans only last 30-40 ...
blunders's user avatar
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21 votes
2 answers
8k views

When recording on film, how does the crew see the footage?

When recording on film, the crew cannot review the footage straight away, as film needs developing. In addition, the director cannot actually see what the camera is recording, as it is recording onto ...
Joren Vaes's user avatar
21 votes
1 answer
5k views

Which movie was the first to use the technique where the camera zooms in on a TV screen and then transitions to the scene shown on the screen?

The above is a scene from The Matrix (1999), where the camera view zooms in on a TV screen and then transitions to the scene shown on the screen. Which movie was the first to use this technique?
Pedro Manuel's user avatar
21 votes
1 answer
1k views

Did the director and editor for House of Cards make aesthetic decisions based on H.264 encoding limitations?

Given that the production team for House of Cards knew the show would be streamed online as the only distribution method, did the directors and editors consider H.264's encoding limitations when ...
Well Actually's user avatar
19 votes
1 answer
4k views

Is there a term of art for a quick location-identifier interstitial scene before cutting to the action?

Is there a term used by directors to describe a brief interstitial scene identifying a location of a following scene? The interstitial doesn't need to show a sign pointing to the location, but it ...
Mark S's user avatar
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19 votes
1 answer
5k views

How was the special high-contrast cinema release of Se7en created?

David Fincher's magnificent noir movie Seven (or Se7en) has very dark cinematography enhancing the moral darkness of the story. I remember that, after its initial success, the studio released a ...
matt_black's user avatar
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18 votes
3 answers
7k views

Zoom actor in while background out? How is this effect called and made?

I don't have a youtube link (I think "The shining" has such a scene), but you all probably know this effect, the actor is zoomed in by the camera while the background zoomed out, probably by zoom in ...
Hauser's user avatar
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18 votes
6 answers
26k views

What was the first full-length feature film shot completely with digital cameras?

Nowadays almost every movie is shot with digital cameras. I would like to know what was the first full-length feature film shot completely with digital technology instead of celluloid.
JuanZe's user avatar
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17 votes
2 answers
19k views

Why do soap operas have the soap opera effect?

The soap opera effect occurs when frame interpolation is used. For example, if a movie is shot at 24 frames per second and then shown on a TV screen which is capable of displaying 60 frames per second ...
Tyler Durden's user avatar
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16 votes
4 answers
6k views

Are lights a worthwhile investment?

If Terrence Malick can get such gorgeous images using almost entirely natural/available light, why do filmmakers bother with artificial lights? From behind-the-scenes material, you learn that much of ...
Tom's user avatar
  • 294
15 votes
2 answers
1k views

In Fargo, why is the 180° rule broken during this scene?

In episode 3 of Fargo, titled "A Muddy Road", the 180° rule is broken during this particular scene, at about 43 minutes into the episode (according to HULU). I couldn't find a clip of the scene online....
Atticus's user avatar
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14 votes
1 answer
10k views

Why does Better Call Saul show future events in black and white?

Throughout Better Call Saul Season 6, all future events (after the main storyline of Breaking Bad ends and Saul lives a low-profile life in exile) are shown in black and white. Normally, events ...
Yu Zhang's user avatar
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14 votes
2 answers
6k views

How are the face-in-suit segments of Iron Man filmed?

This question deals with the actors in a full-body shot of the suits, however I am wondering how the face-inside-the-suit segments are filmed, for example: Iron Man HUD as seen in The Avengers (2012) ...
Crow T Robot's user avatar
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14 votes
4 answers
1k views

Is 'Birdman' the first movie to use the long take technique for events not occuring in real time?

Except for a few seconds in the beginning and the end, the movie 'Birdman' appears as a continuous long take. The only other movie I can think of like that was Hitchcock's 'Rope' (1946). But in ...
Tushar Raj's user avatar
  • 2,903
14 votes
0 answers
306 views

First appearance of the walk down a black hallway with evenly spaced circles of light?

What is the first film or television show to employ this trope: character walks away down a blackened hallway with overhead light fixtures creating evenly spaced circles of light on the floor? In ...
Wad Cheber's user avatar
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13 votes
1 answer
12k views

How did Game Night make shots that made the scene look like a model set?

In the movie Game Night they had several transitionary shots of the town the movie was set in that seemed to be an explicit made to make the town look like a detailed model toy set. This goes with the ...
David says Reinstate Monica's user avatar
12 votes
4 answers
6k views

Time freezes and actors and things can be viewed from different angles. What is this special effect called and how is it made? [duplicate]

The music video for Avicii’s “Lonely Together” shows an effect previously seen in movies like “The Matrix”. What is it is called and how is it made?
Incognito's user avatar
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12 votes
2 answers
4k views

Did Gordon Gekko lie about the sunrise?

In Wall Street (1987), Gordon Gekko calls Bud Fox, and during the call makes mention of the beautiful sunrise he's watching: "I wish you could see this. Light's coming up. I've never seen a ...
Prometheus's user avatar
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12 votes
1 answer
4k views

How did they manage to make Birdman look like one single shot?

In Birdman there are some techniques for making it all look like a single shot that I've picked up on which are quite obvious, such as the camera turning upwards towards the sky and then having it ...
lily pfaffenzeller's user avatar
12 votes
1 answer
1k views

How did they shoot the Las Vegas scene in "Now You See Me"?

How did they shoot the Las Vegas MGM Grand scene in "Now You See Me" (2013)? At the beginning of the Las Vegas scene there is a very large auditorium with a rotunda stage and the camera's viewpoint ...
Tyler Durden's user avatar
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12 votes
1 answer
9k views

Where does the "TV-Look" vs "Cinematic-Look" come from?

It doesn't matter whether its the 80's, 90's or nowadays - there is the cinematic/movie look, and then there is the "cheap" kind of look. The one from daily soaps, or talk shows etc. The "video" look. ...
ndbd's user avatar
  • 231
12 votes
1 answer
6k views

How was pre-title opening in Spectre shot?

The opening scene in 2015's Spectre has a long continuous sequence which, as an amateur filmmaker, is difficult to figure out how it might have been done. The movie begins as an apparent crane shot ...
wallyk's user avatar
  • 4,776
12 votes
1 answer
3k views

What's the longest period of time over which a time lapse film has been recorded?

Time lapse photography can create some pretty impressive visuals. I think we mostly see time-lapse photography in non-fictional works about nature, plants, or the stars. But sometimes it's used in ...
Mark Rogers's user avatar
  • 1,593
11 votes
3 answers
8k views

What is this video effect where there's a square on the left side of the frame?

I see this effect all the time used in music videos, and I always ask myself: What is this effect? What is the square on the left? Is it the same effect? I know it is a vintage camera effect but I ...
s3b4s's user avatar
  • 129
11 votes
3 answers
2k views

The distorted images in 2001: A Space Odyssey

The final segment of 2001 includes distorted images like below to convey an eerie sense. How was it achieved? Did Kubrick use a different lens for these shots? Can anyone specify the lenses he used ...
Alec Brooks's user avatar
11 votes
3 answers
9k views

Camera shot with close-up next to farther away standing person

While watching Final Destination 3 I noticed a very characteristic camera shot. At a scene where the main character, Wendy, sits in her room at the computer (watching the supposedly foretelling fotos),...
Napoleon Wilson's user avatar
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11 votes
2 answers
498 views

Stroboscopic effects in "Love Actually"

Recently I was rewatching Love Actually in TV and before it started a warning appeared: This movie contains stroboscopic effects. Since you don't often see this kind of warning before a movie it ...
Chanandler Bong's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
810 views

Why is the path of film through a camera so convoluted?

Here is a shot of the inside of a Panavision 65mm camera. As you can see the film makes a number of turns. Why is this done? It seems like it would only make noise and scratch the strip.
spraff's user avatar
  • 365
10 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why do lights have a streaky flicker in some movies?

I've noticed that lights (for instance, car headlights, and sometimes other pinpoints of light) in movies occasionally have a streaky flicker emanating from them on alternate frames. You can see an ...
JoeB's user avatar
  • 203
10 votes
2 answers
1k views

How did Kubrick shoot HAL's "eye" in 2001: A Space Odyssey?

How did Kubrick shoot HAL's "eye" in 2001: A Space Odyssey? We see the reflection of the astronauts approaching HAL, but not the camera. How was it done?
Alec Brooks's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
767 views

How were Sophie's interactions with the BFG filmed?

According to the BFG himself, he's a whoppin' 24 feet tall. For the most part, the actress that plays Sophie does a good job of keeping her eyes "on" him, wherever his head is. She also avoids ...
user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
12k views

Camera technique where crowd moves fast around a stationary character?

This is very common scene in movies and TV shows where a character is shown standing stationary but all other characters' movement is shown in kinda fast forward mode. And these characters are moving ...
Ravindra S's user avatar
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9 votes
3 answers
502 views

Why is it a common trend to pan the camera past an object then back to it?

The title might have been vague so let me clarify. I have see this in many movies and television series over the years, even cartoons. Let me create a scenario since I can't visually remember one to ...
user avatar
9 votes
3 answers
3k views

What's usually the effective visual resolution of typical Hollywood Movies?

I'm really surprised by the quality of the visuals in some new movies this year (2018). I'm curious to know in what resolution these cameras typically record to experience this quality on a cinema ...
GonzaloPani's user avatar
9 votes
1 answer
827 views

Why was tilt shift used for the Henley sequence in The Social Network?

David fincher is known to be a perfectionist and each and every frame of his movie is consciously put there to further the main plot of the movie while making the audience relate to the characters ...
Shashank's user avatar
  • 762
9 votes
1 answer
706 views

How does a Camera move freely inside a car in a movie scene?

In Children Of Men, there is an uncut scene wherein a camera moves freely inside a car full of people. It starts with a front shot with the camera in the dashboard position facing back towards the ...
Robert Tattorn's user avatar
9 votes
2 answers
4k views

Are there any other films which are constructed in a "Photomontage with narration" style similarly to La Jetée?

La Jetée is a short, French sci-fi film of about 30 minutes. The whole film is just one long sequence of beautiful black and white photographs, except for a single short sequence where the photographs ...
TheIronKnuckle's user avatar
9 votes
1 answer
2k views

What is the term for this kind of final scene?

For reference, my question comes after having viewed the latest episode of the HBO series Silicon Valley (Season 3, Episode 9 - "Daily Active Users"). The final camera shot was a single, stationary ...
Nyantho's user avatar
  • 91