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Difference in the cinematography of Dragon Tattoo movies


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#1 Pete Varnai

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Posted 21 July 2012 - 07:10 PM

Hi,

here is this case. I've just seen the 2011 Girl with the Dragon Tattoo movie, and then checked out the 2009 version. Although (in my opinion) both are lit nicely, the 2009 felt more like TV while the 2011 absolutely like theater movie. I did some research and found out the 2009 was really ment for TV too, but also for theater.
So my question is, even if this 2009 version is nicely photographed, it feels like tv, but why? Something maybe with the shots, with the angles, probably the scenics, but I can't tell.

If someone has some time to check these movies out again and think about what the difference might be, that would be great.
Thanks in advance!

Peter
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#2 Karl Eklund

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Posted 21 July 2012 - 07:53 PM

Hi,

here is this case. I've just seen the 2011 Girl with the Dragon Tattoo movie, and then checked out the 2009 version. Although (in my opinion) both are lit nicely, the 2009 felt more like TV while the 2011 absolutely like theater movie. I did some research and found out the 2009 was really ment for TV too, but also for theater.
So my question is, even if this 2009 version is nicely photographed, it feels like tv, but why? Something maybe with the shots, with the angles, probably the scenics, but I can't tell.

If someone has some time to check these movies out again and think about what the difference might be, that would be great.
Thanks in advance!

Peter

The Swedish version was shot on film, and the two movies after it was shot on Red One (since it is a triology), and then the American is shot on Epic.

I don't remember too much about the movie's cinematography, but I remember watching it thinking it was OK, looking like film should look.

What kind of stuff did you watch the movie on? There are so many TV's that are setup in ways that make stuff looks like "TV", by interpolating frames and stuff. One of my friends TV have that effect, and from time to time it just looks awful, it makes cinematic stuff look like cheap TV, at least with the motion. Might also be some bad conversion from 25 fps to 24 fps, or 29.97...

But also bear in mind that the Swedish one had a budget of 7 million USD, and the American one I think was around 80 million USD.

There is an article in American Cinematographer about the Swedish one, from 2010, I think the March or April issue.

Edited by Karl Eklund, 21 July 2012 - 07:56 PM.

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#3 Bill DiPietra

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Posted 21 July 2012 - 11:35 PM

According to IMDb, all three Swedish films were shot on film - The Girl who Played with Fire and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest both originated on regular 16mm. That could be the difference you are noticing. Most of The Girl With the Dragoon Tattoo originated on 35mm.

Personally, I felt the photography in the Swedish films far outdid Fincher's version, simply due to its simplicity. Fincher did his typical slick and stylized look for the film, which has grown tiresome. I wasn't impressed.
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#4 Pete Varnai

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Posted 22 July 2012 - 01:45 AM

Thanks for the ideas! =) Altough I don't think this is the case with what I see. I've seen both on the same device, one after the other, and checked the conversion to make sure, and nothing's with it. I watched only the first swedish, so the other two does not count this time, but I didn't know they were shot on different medium.

The Budget is a great idea though, but it doesn't feel cheap, and as you said it too, cinematography is great either. I sense something about how the scenes are broken down to shots, the angle of these shots. I think there is something in the method that feels more like TV.

The english dub also helps to feel the tv-thing, but I checked out without sound, and still got that feeling. I don't know what it is.
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#5 Freya Black

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Posted 22 July 2012 - 04:09 AM

According to IMDb, all three Swedish films were shot on film - The Girl who Played with Fire and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest both originated on regular 16mm. That could be the difference you are noticing. Most of The Girl With the Dragoon Tattoo originated on 35mm.


Was under the impression the latter two films were actually Super16 tho I could be wrong. Is there a cinematography article on them anywhere or were they drowned out by the Fincher movie?

love

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#6 Peter Milanov

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Posted 22 July 2012 - 06:25 AM

The Swedish version was shot on film, and the two movies after it was shot on Red One (since it is a triology), and then the American is shot on Epic.


Let´s get this straight. The first Swedish film was shot on 35mm with one scen on S16. The other two Swedish films where shot on S16. The American version was mainly shot on Red One.
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#7 Karl Eklund

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Posted 22 July 2012 - 03:37 PM

Let´s get this straight. The first Swedish film was shot on 35mm with one scen on S16. The other two Swedish films where shot on S16. The American version was mainly shot on Red One.

Yeah you are right. I never checked it out but I worked with one of the guys who worked on the first one and he said first was 35mm and rest was Red One, so I never bothered to verify.
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#8 Pat Murray

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Posted 08 August 2012 - 11:37 AM

one ofthe feels more like movie and the other more like TV, but why?


That's because one was shot for the cinema and the other was shot for TV. At least that's what I've read on the original trilogy. Not as common today, but it has happened in the past where movies originally intended for tv received a theatrical release instead. The pilot for Buck Rogers and Rocky are a couple of made for tv movies that got theatrical releases.
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#9 Peter Milanov

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 12:35 PM

That's because one was shot for the cinema and the other was shot for TV.



The first Swedish movie was intended for theatrical release from the start. The other two was shot for TV but ended up in theaters as well.

I would say the main reasons for the difference is:

- Budget
- Fincher
- Tradition
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#10 Bruce Southerland

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Posted 15 September 2012 - 05:08 PM

Hi,

here is this case. I've just seen the 2011 Girl with the Dragon Tattoo movie, and then checked out the 2009 version. Although (in my opinion) both are lit nicely, the 2009 felt more like TV while the 2011 absolutely like theater movie. I did some research and found out the 2009 was really ment for TV too, but also for theater.
So my question is, even if this 2009 version is nicely photographed, it feels like tv, but why? Something maybe with the shots, with the angles, probably the scenics, but I can't tell.

If someone has some time to check these movies out again and think about what the difference might be, that would be great.
Thanks in advance!

Peter

Overall the 2009 version looked very theatrical to me. Two things that I did notice--1. There were a few scenes that looked "lit", they were day interiors,
and 2. A few of the sets/locations looked as though they did not spend very much on production design.
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#11 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 15 September 2012 - 06:13 PM

Time. Money.
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