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"forward reversal"?


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#1 Shawn Murphy

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Posted 18 May 2005 - 01:52 AM

I searched several forums and did my obligatory Google search, so I must have the term confused with something else, but a guy I'm going to work with said that he wanted to "replicate Hitchcocks use of the FORWARD REVERSAL camera technique used in Vertigo. It is used when the actor Jimmy Stewart is running up the stairs in the beginning 5 minutes. Robert Redford uses it in Quiz Show, Martin Scorsese in Good Fellas, and Joe Dante makes use of it in The Howling also."

Unfortunately I don't have these films in front of me to do a quick preview, but even more puzzling is my inability to find mention of the term "forward reversal" in any forum or web serach.

Thanks.
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#2 Jake Kerber

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Posted 18 May 2005 - 03:04 AM

I haven't heard the technique referred to as 'forward reversal', but the effect is achieved by combining a zoom in with a dolly out; or a zoom out with a dolly in. Essentially the goal is to maintain the same composition throughout the shot, while the perspective is changing (i.e. making the image more compressed by zooming in while dollying out).

It makes it look as though the world around a character is changing while they remain still.

-Jake Kerber
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#3 Luke Prendergast

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Posted 18 May 2005 - 06:05 AM

CONTRA-ZOOM is its name
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#4 Shawn Murphy

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Posted 18 May 2005 - 05:13 PM

I haven't heard the technique referred to as 'forward reversal', but the effect is achieved by combining a zoom in with a dolly out; or a zoom out with a dolly in.  Essentially the goal is to maintain the same composition throughout the shot, while the perspective is changing (i.e. making the image more compressed by zooming in while dollying out).

It makes it look as though the world around a character is changing while they remain still.

-Jake Kerber

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



That makes sense, thaks for the clarification,

and thank you, 'smith..john' for the terminology update!
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#5 Dan Salzmann

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Posted 19 May 2005 - 01:12 AM

These usually require lots of runthroughs as well as very good communication between the 1st AC and the dolly grip.
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#6 Shawn Murphy

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Posted 19 May 2005 - 11:03 AM

These usually require lots of runthroughs as well as very good communication between the 1st AC and the dolly grip.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



Yeah, I was thinking that this would not be a trivial exercise without some practice, and seeing how I am BRAND NEW.. well, perhaps we better have a PLAN 'B'! I just tried to do a little exercise using my camera on tripod on a chair with wheels just to get an idea of what this looks like...

...perhaps I need to look at some of these film/samples as I can't seem to visualize what the desired effect is, or would be, if you are always keeping the same framing while zooming in/out to counterbalance the dolly in/out (perhaps the effect is not about keeping the exact same framing?)

**ok, I get it, it's about the DOF and the background changing (coming closer or moving away from the subject?), which explains why I saw no effect at all in my test run, because I was using a picture on the wall as my focal point!
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#7 David Cox

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Posted 19 May 2005 - 03:31 PM

Yes - you need objects with depth to see the effect! The idea usually is that the foreground object stays at a similar size in frame, while the background drops away (or gets closer). Another good example that you might have in your collection is in Jaws. I vaguely recall its a shot of roy schneider sitting on the beach witnessing the first shark attack he sees. Just a vague recollection though!
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#8 Sam Wells

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Posted 20 May 2005 - 07:47 PM

It's about the *perspective* changing.

-Sam
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