Auto Focus- Story of Bob Crane at

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Old March 28th, 2003, 04:55 AM   #1
Capt. Quirk
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Auto Focus- Story of Bob Crane

Hey- Just saw Auto Focus, the movie about Bob Crane's life, death, and the freaky stuff in between. What I thought was trippy, was the equipment they used in the movie. Flashback anyone? The first VTR and Video cam? The first VCR tape? Color video?

For those too young to remember, Bob Crane played Colonel Hogan on Hogans Heroes. He got hooked on girlie pictures, and went down hill from there.
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Old April 3rd, 2003, 05:23 PM   #2
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Great film. I have watched 30 films per week for 15 years, and I would put this one in the top 25. Greg Kinnear with the prosthetics to show Bob as he aged, and Willem was unbelieveable. The acting was brilliant, the cinematography was fantastic. I loved how they used degrading film stock, moved to all hand-held and deprived the cast and crew of sleep as the production went into the final scenes to give a the entire film a look of falling apart, like Bob's life. The multiple shots of his travelling dinner theater scene where they look out the window, with the audience eventually losing all interest. It was just completely far out. I loved it. It kills me to see one of Paul's films with two copies sitting in the new release section next to 240 copies of My Big Fat Greek Wedding. It's a wonderful film that everyone should watch. Check out the framing as the movie progresses. The camera was a major player in the film. To me, it captured a real life drama almost as entertainingly as Permanant Midnight...
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Old April 4th, 2003, 12:08 PM   #3
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I'll have to check it out....

My flashbacks on this subject goes back to my days as a kid watching that show on a regular basis, and growing up in Phoenix AZ where he was killed in a hotel room in a "seedy" part of Phoenix(which at that time we thought was strange for a TV star).
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Old April 5th, 2003, 12:32 AM   #4
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It was an interesting film. I was never a fan of Hogan's Heroes but certainly watched many episodes in my youth. I had no idea he was so disturbed.

Regarding the video equipment he and his friend were using, it took me back a bit. During my first two years of college, during the early 1970's, I took a job as a part-time a/v technician for the college. For the first few months this consisted mainly of setting up film projectors and overhead projectors. But then we got our first VIDEO TAPE RECORDER! (Ooooh) This was a Sony b/w unit with open-reels of (I believe) 1/2" tape. The deck weighed 50+ lbs. and the camera was tethered to the deck with a thick coaxial video cable. We had to cart this gear around on a large cart with the deck on the bottom, monitor on top and the camera on a tripod with a dolly. The image quality was awful, but it was still very cool to be able to "film" something. The following year we got our first COLOR video tape recorder (Ooooh!). It was basically the same gear configuration with the deck weighing even more. I have no idea what the gear cost but I have to believe it was close to $10,000.

I think about that every so often as I consider just how far this technology has come in price and performance.
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Old April 5th, 2003, 11:08 AM   #5
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I just saw the film last night and thought it was pretty good. The parts about the equipment definitely do get you thinking back as far as you can remember to the first video stuff you ever saw. I thought Greg Kinnear (as always) did a fantastic job in the lead role.

Just think in 20-30 years, people will be thinking back about the old days when the used Mini-DV cameras. 8-)
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