Bourne Supremecy - why the shaky camera style? at

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Old August 3rd, 2004, 09:08 AM   #1
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Bourne Supremecy - why the shaky camera style?

My wife nearly got motion sickness from all the shaky scenes. I guess they want you to think you're right there???? but my eyes don't send the jumpy image to my brain like a camera does so all I kept thinking was "WHY DIDN"T YOU USE DVRigPro or a Glidecam?" j/k!

Though I liked the movie, I wanna know from those in the know (the film industry) why they went with this.
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Old August 3rd, 2004, 09:33 AM   #2
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My girlfriend DID get motion sick from this movie too (we saw it at the huge screened Cinerama Dome, which made it worse). I had to look away a few times myself.

I remember watching "The Rock" when it came out and felt that the camera work was too frenetic in several of the scenes, that it drew me out of the movie. I saw it again recently and it didn't bother me at all. Such is the nature of filmmaking today: we have been slowly conditioned to accept quicker cuts and erratic camera movement and still be able to absorb and hopefully, be entertained. "Bourne Sumpremacy" seems to have rocketed ahead a few notches, but I imagine that five years from now it will seem relatively benign. Or with any luck, it won't. I personally thought it was way over the top, and it ruined the film for me.
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Old August 3rd, 2004, 11:09 AM   #3
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The director of "Bourne Supremacy" made "Bloody Sunday" a year ago which was a docudrama about the Bloody Sunday march shootings in Northern Ireland. It was lauded for the pseudo-documentary style (I didn't see it). So the producers of "Bourne" knew what they were getting when they hired him. So the lineage of "Supremacy" was more in that gritty realistic style than "The Rock" MTV style editing.

I agree that it was too much but after the first scene I accepted it and went with the flow.

I haven't read any behind-the-scenes information about it but I believe the intention was to root "Supremacy" in the real world, to show that despite the fantastic feats, that Bourne's world was rooted in reality. Handheld filmmaking always says to me: 'realism'.

Plus, I would imagine that it would save some money in the setups.

You may have noted also that Joe Carnahan who directed "Narc" recently left the production of "Mission Impossible 3". When I heard that Carnahan was picked to direct Mi3 I scratched my head. "Narc" was filmed in a gritty, realistic style. Carnahan may have a stylistic repertoire that includes glossy, slick productions like the first two "Mission Impossible" films, but I don't know about that. It just seemed strange that he would be picked for it based upon "Narc".

Then again, Frankenheimer did "The French Connection II" and he did "Ronin". So some directors do have that kind of range.
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Old August 3rd, 2004, 11:25 AM   #4
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Bloody Sundaywas horrible to watch...way to many handheld shots. It made me say to myself 100 times, "Ok put the stupid camera on a tripod and give it a rest!"

The camera guy never put the camera on a tripod in that movie once....not that I could see.

I won't bother seeing Bourne then.

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Old August 3rd, 2004, 12:00 PM   #5
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I also did not like the overly shaky camera in the Bourne Supremacy. I can understand them wanting to make you feel like you are really there but they just overdid it. I would much rather be able to clearly see the action. I also hate how so many recent war movies have been using that "quick-cuts" style of editing where you sometimes cannot even really interpret everything that is going on.
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Old August 3rd, 2004, 03:02 PM   #6
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Thank God someone else has said they don't like this shaky camera work, and the quick cuts (strobing). I hate it! And when I see it on TV the channel gets changed.

Whirly-twirly-zoom-spin-strobe is overdone ad nauseam!

I can't wait for the next inane trend. Surely it can't be any worse.
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Old August 3rd, 2004, 03:35 PM   #7
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<<<-- Originally posted by Nick Kerpchar : ...I can't wait for the next inane trend. Surely it can't be any worse. -->>>

BUHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!! You're kidding, right? Right?!

It's only a matter of time, Nick. And it's only going to get worse, because by then we'll be used to the "shaky-cam" thing.

And, please, don't call me "Shirley"... ;)
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Old August 3rd, 2004, 04:07 PM   #8
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Count me in on the nausea express... I found it very irritating. I thought the first flick had one of the best hand to hand fight scenes I had ever scene, and was fairly well edited.

I hate it when combat is all hand-held and up close with tight cuts. I understand it puts the viewer "inside" the chaos of the fight... but without some stable wide shots, the choreography and intent of the fight is lost.
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Old August 4th, 2004, 08:13 AM   #9
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My wife and I both were irritated by the overly-shaky camera scenes. Loved the movie and the action, but really wanted to see some detail and clarity. Isn't this a case where the camera work makes itself too noticable?

I think the story line and acting talent were strong enough not to have to rely on (was a slo- shutter? Charles?) irratic camera work to "add-intensity."

my two cents-plus tax.

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Old August 4th, 2004, 04:50 PM   #10
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Shaky Camera scenes seem to be the thing right now (inspired by reality t.v. maybe?). The thing is; our eyes/brain have a natural OIS built in. So, when we are really running around its smoother than what the films are trying to emulate.

There needs to be some kind of hybrid handheld/stabilzer that isn't really a steadicam and not really hand held style.

Just a thought
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Old August 4th, 2004, 08:18 PM   #11
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For me, more than the handheld or the fast cuts.. what "could" become annoying, is the excessive mix of handheld and fast cuts with that strobing effect everyone is using these days(shutter speed?).

Notice I said "could" because IMO it can be very effective if done right. First that comes to mind is Saving Private Ryan.

I havenīt seen Bourne Supremacy yet... but now Iīm biased... (sometimes I break my rule about reading the least possible about movies I want to see).
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Old August 4th, 2004, 09:19 PM   #12
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Glad to see that I am not the only one who thought the camera work was outrageously annoying. I noticed it RIGHT AWAY...and even at the scenes were Matt Damon would be sitting down...or in bed...the camera would shake as if the camera man had to go to the bathroom and couldn't hold it much longer.

I really loved the cinematography of the first film, though.

Saving Private Ryan is still the best hand-held/shutter camera work I've seen so far because you can actually see what's going on.
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Old August 5th, 2004, 01:51 AM   #13
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I'm glad to read that the general concensus here is against ShakeyCam!
It worries me and many of my colleagues here that producers and commisioning editors allow this technique (-too good a word for it really) to appear in so much drama footage. Unfortunately, it will be self-perpetuating as the next wave of wannabee directors will take it as "the style" to aim for, without heeding the feedback from viewers and film/tv workers alike. We have a weekly hospital drama series in the UK called "Casualty" where I know as soon as I see a partivular director's name in the opening credit sequence that it's going to be Shakesville. My family know it too, and there are howls of derision...

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Old August 5th, 2004, 06:08 AM   #14
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I haven't seen Supremecy, but I've seen that ShakeyCam at work many a time. Sometimes it can be effective, other times very annoying. One case where it often crops up is TV mini series'.

I watched a decidedly average US mini series about a massive earthquake (can't remember the name), and as well as being a bit too shakey, they did this thing where they would zoom in halfway through a shot, maybe to highlight a characters face etc. This got really annoying as they used it over and over again.

This kind of unconventional camerawork was somewhat pioneered by US cop shows like 'Homicide' and 'NYPD Blue' in the mid to late '90s. But has spiralled out of control by some directors overdoing this style.
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Old August 5th, 2004, 01:56 PM   #15
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this makes me want to make that movie i've had in my head for a while now. it's a movie that kills all other 'shakycam' movies out there. every second there would be a cut for a 2 hour movie. if someone didn't die watching my movie then they are 'the living dead'. i wanna take excess to the excess and kill those bastards that make this type of crap by saying, well here here, look at this. want shaky-cam? i'll give you shakycam. even they will vomit after watching it!!!! hahahahahah i'm evil!!!
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