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The Look of "Domino"


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#1 Joe Taylor

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Posted 07 March 2006 - 10:08 PM

Just watched "Domino." Very interesting look if you're into this sort of thing. I understand that the film was shot on reversal then cross processed, but the sickley yellow/orange look, I'm wondering if this was achieved with glass filtration and/or through the use of DI. I remember really being struck by this look with "Summer of Sam" way back in 1999, but that was before everybody was doing DI. I have experimented with cross processing of reversal film, but could never get that "look."

When it comes to really admiring great cinematography, I have always appreciated classically shot color films such as "Days of Heaven" but there was some really striking work in "Domino." I understand that it could be regarded as "trashy" but there is some work in this film that is every bit as impressive as any movie I've seen from 2005.

O'd be interested in hearing what others think.
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#2 Gordon Highland

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Posted 07 March 2006 - 10:54 PM

Did you check out the featurette on the DVD? A lot more technical than most, with some good info. I thought the movie itself was not very good, but visually stunning. His poor editor and assitant editors. . . good lord!! Six cameras rolling all the time, he said, and I really dug some of the creative framing that I'm sure that allows. "Man on Fire" was very similar to me. There's lot of shots of them doing hand cranking. I know they used lots of low frame rates printed at low frame rates for smearing (the featurette had lots of shots of slates). They said the exposure really got away from them sometimes due to shooting reversal. I didn't see much in they way of artificial lighting. Tony loves his grad filters, although I don't remember seeing as many of them as usual.

And of course, I'd pay to watch Keira read the phone book for two hours. . .
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#3 Mike Williamson

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Posted 08 March 2006 - 05:24 AM

There are two articles worth checking out, one in Nov. '05 "American Cinematographer" and one in Oct. '05 "ICG Magazine". DP Dan Mindel talks about the difficulties of shooting multiple cameras, especially balancing the lighting for a number of very different film stocks.

In terms of the color skewing you're noticing, that's one of the results of cross-processing reversal stock. The color balance tends to go towards green, but it's really difficult to predict exactly what will happen. If you look at some of the cross-processed scenes in "Three Kings" you'll see the colors shift wildly within individual shots as the characters move in and out of shadowy areas.

So in "Domino", they kind of embraced the crazy and used uncorrected fluorescent practicals in places to get more green, little or no fill light with hot, toppy hard light, basically a lot of stuff that would scare most people to death. I'm pretty sure the film went through a DI, but I'd guess that it was used more for balancing things out than pushing the look harder, but who knows. I really like the film, partly because it takes a lot of risks visually and pushes the boundaries of what's acceptable in a Hollywood film. It's also a testament to the talent of the director and the entire camera crew that they could shoot with that many cameras and get consistently interesting shots rather than a big pile of mediocre coverage.
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#4 Mike Kaminski

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Posted 08 March 2006 - 02:21 PM

Domino was also push-processed, sometimes by as much as two stops, so i think this is the main factor in blowing out highlights and getting those crazy colours; when this is combined with the cross-processing it makes for really vibrant colouring. As Mike Williamson pointed out, theres a really good article in American Cinematographer that you might want to check out from November.

Edited by mike kaminski, 08 March 2006 - 02:21 PM.

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#5 jake lane

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Posted 09 March 2006 - 12:10 AM

I went to school with Domino in England. Personally I thought it wasnt much of a film and missed the point of what she was about!
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