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Old July 14th, 2005, 12:37 PM   #1
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Excessive Camera Motion?

What is your opinion of the shooting style of the 2002 movie Bloody Sunday?

I recently watched (or tried to watch) "Bloody Sunday" on my 42-in HDTV. I found the so-called "documentary style" shooting to be extremely distracting. The camera movement went well beyond the Private Ryan "reality" shooting. In addition to that, much of the framing was people's backs. As characters moved in buildings and outside, mostly what you saw was a very shaky camera following the character from the back. There was so much of this I can only assume it was intentional.

I apologize if this offends anyone, but my assessment is if you were given a short clip of this movie without any identification, your reaction would be it was shot by a rank amateur who just happened to be there when it happened.

What I find surprising is the Amazon.com Customer Reviews. Quite a few people gave high praise for the "doco" style shooting. This style is clearly one of those "beauty is in the eye of the beholder" cases. Although I was very interested in the story, I just couldn't bear to watch the movie all the way through. To put this in context, I enjoyed "Private Ryan".

I prefer that the camera be invisible to me. I enjoy a movie the most when I feel like I am there, like a fly on the wall, somehow invisibly observing everything that is going on. As soon as I become aware of explicit camera movement, I am distracted, kind of like being woken up from a dream.

I may very well be in the minority here. I'm very curious what others think of the shooting style in "Bloody Sunday."
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Old July 14th, 2005, 02:18 PM   #2
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I watched the second "Bourne" movie (Bourne Supremecy?) last night and found the chase scene to be very hard to watch.
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Old July 14th, 2005, 05:54 PM   #3
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The most disturbing fact about Bloody Sunday, I found, were those constant fade outs. Really, I couldn't stand them, and I didn't see the use of them, they really really buggered me. For that reason alone, I thought the movie was horribly overestimated.
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Old July 15th, 2005, 11:08 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick King
I watched the second "Bourne" movie (Bourne Supremecy?) last night and found the chase scene to be very hard to watch.
I second that emotion.

In fact, if you watch the "making of" bits on the DVD it's hillarious to see what they went through to get that look; in some parts it took two guys to shake that big-ol' camera that much...
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Old March 24th, 2007, 11:47 AM   #5
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check out the cameo interviews with the director on the Lords of Dogtown DVD. There is a constant weaving and bobbing of the frame, and dozens of short gratuitous zooms in and out. But because the level of movement is more or less constant, and the zooms ramp smoothly, it works real well to my eye - a very authentic and confident feel.

It's great to see people break rules and make it work.
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Old March 24th, 2007, 12:14 PM   #6
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It's great to see people break rules and make it work.
Well, if breaking the rules is all it take to be great; I'm going to shoot a full movie where the audio is barely understandable and the video is soooo dark that you can't see or hear what is happening! Damn thing should win an Oscar!!!!!!!

All of the movement and weird cuts and such just try to cover poorly written and directed movies and are unbelievibly irritating!

Hollywierd---please stop.

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Old March 24th, 2007, 09:16 PM   #7
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I think a movie that used the rough style of shooting effectively is "Children of Men". A few scenes I think they used it to simply get you ready for more of it later, but much of it was appropriate for that script. They seemed to want the movie to look somewhat mundane so that the fantastic events would be more "real" and I think it worked.
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Old March 26th, 2007, 11:55 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Peter Ralph View Post
check out the cameo interviews with the director on the Lords of Dogtown DVD. There is a constant weaving and bobbing of the frame, and dozens of short gratuitous zooms in and out. But because the level of movement is more or less constant, and the zooms ramp smoothly, it works real well to my eye - a very authentic and confident feel.

It's great to see people break rules and make it work.

I am taking this exact approach on my new doc, motivated moves. Somebody saw my pitch video and said it reminded them of the LoD special features...



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Old March 27th, 2007, 03:49 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Marcus Marchesseault View Post
I think a movie that used the rough style of shooting effectively is "Children of Men". A few scenes I think they used it to simply get you ready for more of it later, but much of it was appropriate for that script. They seemed to want the movie to look somewhat mundane so that the fantastic events would be more "real" and I think it worked.
I agree, there it works very well
(btw: Children of Men is without a doubt one of the best movies of 2006)
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Old March 27th, 2007, 04:13 PM   #10
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great camerwork Ash - are you shooting with any sort of support gizmo for the off-tripod stuff? IMHO you should have done the whole thing handheld - going back to tripod really seems to switch off the footage in some subtle way. Is this an ongoing project for you?
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