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Major Motion Mishap?


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#1 Evan Winter

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Posted 08 July 2005 - 02:50 AM

i just came back from cinderella man and while i thought the movie was quite good i was surprised by unusual aspects of the cinematography.

now, not having read anything about the intellectual underpinnings or technical aspirations of cinderella man's cinematography, it was surprising to me to see:

1. quite a few shots that were grainy and mismatched other shots within the same scene (numerous nighttime close-ups had intense grain and then we'd cut to a slightly wider shot and immediately all grain was gone - very jarring).

2. stylistic choices in color palettes and exposure that seemed to come out of nowhere (at times the cinematography is fully saturated and very evenly exposed, at times very contrasty and desaturated, etc, etc, and these choices never really feel motivated. often times we'd cut from one scene to another and back again and the choices were so different that they felt out of place or as if the scenes were from two or even three completely different movies - as opposed to being lighting choices meant to enhance the emotion or story of the film).

now, don't get me wrong, i'm not slamming the cinematography. in fact, i really enjoyed the approach to lighting in cinderella man and i loved the way the fight scenes were filmed. it's just that the 2 points above cropped up again and again and they always felt like mistakes.

i guess, all in all, i was surprised to see so many 'mistakes' in a major dramatic picture helmed by a group of respected storytellers.

has anyone else seen the picture that would care to comment?

evan
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#2 Evan Winter

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Posted 09 July 2005 - 01:13 PM

perhaps this at least explains some of the grain issues.
(quoted from the american cinematographer june 2005 issue)

"In general, Totino strove to keep the light levels as low as possible, and he cites this as the chief reason he filmed Cinderella Man in Super 35mm 2.35:1 rather than anamorphic 2.40:1. ?Much as I?d love to do an anamorphic film, I tend to work in the toe of the negative, so I need lenses that will look good wide open, and you can?t shoot most anamorphics wide open,? he says. ?A lot of our interiors and night scenes were shot at T2.? In the shadows, the stop was even lower: ?When Jay?s light meter goes below T1, it reads ?E,?? the cinematographer laughs. ?We would joke about that being ?E for Enough? ? the meter says it?s enough, so let?s shoot!?"

evan
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#3 Alvin Pingol

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Posted 13 July 2005 - 01:16 AM

"...the meter says it?s enough, so let?s shoot!?"

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Hah, well apparently it wasn't enough. Evan you're not the only one complaining; check out the other two Cinderella Man threads. It has been noted that several shots appear to suffer from underexposure and, in an effort to save the shots, milky shadows and increased grain thanks to push process.
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#4 timHealy

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Posted 13 July 2005 - 02:10 AM

when a digiatl meter says E, it is time to pull out an old spectra and read footcandles. I love the old spectra meters...just that they are so damn fragile.

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#5 Sam Wells

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Posted 13 July 2005 - 10:28 AM

when a digiatl meter says E, it is time to pull out an old spectra and read footcandles.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Why, will the old Spectra be more optimistic ? :) I bet not.

(when a digital meter says E you punch in a lower frame rate/ shutter speed (or higher EI) & see how far under you are. If you want to.)

-Sam
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#6 Mike Williamson

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Posted 13 July 2005 - 10:49 AM

(when a digital meter says E you punch in a lower frame rate/ shutter speed (or higher EI) & see how far under you are. If you want to.)

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I've been using a Sekonic L508 (digital) meter which has been working great for low-light stuff, crank it up to 4000ASA and you're all set!

Me: "So I'm getting an F1.4 under the street light..."
First AC: "OK, but your meter's set to what?"
Me: "About 4000ASA."
First AC: "Aren't we shooting 500 speed stock?"
Me: "Yeah, I think we're ready to shoot..."
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#7 Jon Rosenbloom

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Posted 13 July 2005 - 10:59 AM

perhaps this at least explains some of the grain issues.
(quoted from the american cinematographer june 2005 issue)

"In general, Totino strove to keep the light levels as low as possible, and he cites this as the chief reason he filmed Cinderella Man in Super 35mm 2.35:1 rather than anamorphic 2.40:1. ?Much as I?d love to do an anamorphic film, I tend to work in the toe of the negative, so I need lenses that will look good wide open, and you can?t shoot most anamorphics wide open,? he says. ?A lot of our interiors and night scenes were shot at T2.? In the shadows, the stop was even lower: ?When Jay?s light meter goes below T1, it reads ?E,?? the cinematographer laughs. ?We would joke about that being ?E for Enough? ? the meter says it?s enough, so let?s shoot!?"

evan

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I don't get that. You can have all the footcandles in the world and still "work in the toe;" just stop down. Maybe it's a quality of light issue, or it's easier for the actors ...
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#8 Michael Most

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Posted 13 July 2005 - 11:28 AM

I don't get that. You can have all the footcandles in the world and still "work in the toe;" just stop down. Maybe it's a quality of light issue, or it's easier for the actors ...

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Stopping down affects depth of field and a number of other visual characteristics. You could use ND filtration instead, but you would quickly get to a point where the operator cannot see anything in the viewfinder.
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