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The Doctor

JWFan's More Annoying Trends in Cinema Thread

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8 hours ago, Brundlefly said:

I can tell you, there is absolutely NO reason or occasion to use shaky-cam in action films!!!

 

There isn't, but it's the easy thing to do, if you can't film punching scenes to save your life. It's also cheap. 

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It really depends on how it's used and how often. John McTiernan uses it for a couple of shots in Die Hard With A Vengeance, IIRC. And it really adds to the tension. 

 

Overuse can kill the effect though.

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A handheld camera can get shaky due to the fact that the cameraman has to move quickly and normally has the purpose to give a scene a realistic, documentary impression. An example is Saving Private Ryan, but even there you always have a good overview and can follow the scene.

A shaky cam is just a wildly shaken camera as a pathetic attempt to evoke the impression of rashness and terror in action or horror films. Sometimes the shake-effect is added in post-production. The actual result however is that no one knows what's going on and loses interest. It's a mean of amateurs and bad directors/cameramen.

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23 minutes ago, Brundlefly said:

A handheld camera can get shaky due to the fact that the cameraman has to move quickly and normally has the purpose to give a scene a realistic, documentary impression. An example is Saving Private Ryan, but even there you always have a good overview and can follow the scene.

A shaky cam is just a wildly shaken camera as a pathetic attempt to evoke the impression of rashness and terror in action or horror films. Sometimes the shake-effect is added in post-production. The actual result however is that no one knows what's going on and loses interest. It's a mean of amateurs and bad directors/cameramen.

 

^This

 

A moving camera does NOT equal shaky cam. Camera movement can be extremely elegant, measured and smooth - preserving specific framing and mis-en-scene. Shaky cam is just hyper - just stick it onto the shoulder of somebody and ask them to chase the actors or stick the camera in their face.

 

Film-making is just so piss poor these days that the rare "normally" directed film seems like a revelation.

9 hours ago, Chen G. said:

Financially, of course. And that's how most Hollywood franchise films are made: they are a string of separate, standalone films.

 

But artistically, you miss out on using a multi-film narrative as a dramatic tool in and of itself: you can "plant" things in the first film ("his father succumbed to the same sickness") for it to pay off in a later installment. Done right, the sense of gratification (derived dramatically from planting and payoff) will be much bigger than one used within the confines of a single film.

 

When the films aren't preplanned, you can retroactively pay off something from a previous film. But it never feels quite as organic, either because the "planting" wasn't designed as planting ("A young Jedi named Darth Vader") or because it was planted without the eventual payoff in mind ("no, there is another.")

 

 

 

Honestly, if this is done too much, it adds to the feeling of watching TV. You go "oh there's a next episode or a previous episode". The MCU is basically a bidbudget TV series. 

 

Films should have more rigor. They should be more self-contained. There is really the scope of focus and refinement in a film, of narrative compression that TV does not have. It is sad that film-makers chose to ignore the most attractive quality of cinema and try to make it more diffuse like TV.

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Again, so long as the films are telling one narrative that one can watch from beginning to end (e.g. Harry Potter films, Middle Earth films, Star Wars main episodes) than it doesn't offend my sensibilities. If it break off into multiple storylines of films (e.g Marvel, DC, Star Wars spin-offs, etc) than yes. 

 

And even a film series presenting a single narrative can be too drawn out. I think we're heading into that territory with the Star Wars episodes: We're seeing repetitions even when they aren't quite there. Not because the filmmakers are being deriviate in their endeavor, but because the series has started to run its course.

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3 hours ago, Fancyarcher said:

 

There isn't, but it's the easy thing to do, if you can't film punching scenes to save your life. It's also cheap. 

 

Handheld and the illusion of handheld can be used to have moving elements seem not well contained within the frame, like the our view can't follow the entirety of it. This can showcase for example enormous size, weight, inertia, g-forces, etc which I think are hard to recreate in film and get the idea across to the viewer.

 

Although to be honest I can't only think on the scene from my avatar at the moment (and we usually don't get battle scenes of such size). There must be more examples of this.

 

 

I'm a bit amused at the time period implied by the "post-millenial movies" phrase.

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Anime / live-action is a bit different in how it handles its action, like say in that pic from Evagelion. I'm sure there are more examples of it, but nothing comes to mind aside from the action / tournament animes, maybe Dragon Ball in general, though that's a bit more "relentless / never-ending" at points I suppose. 

 

In live-action it's much harder to do that fluid-constant type of action. It takes a real skilled filmmaker to do it anyway, and most of them don't seem to be working in Hollywood as much as they could. A lot of major modern action need to be shot constantly with things going on at all the time because apparently you can't keep the audiences attention otherwise, hence "shaky cam". 

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Great series.

 

3 hours ago, TheUlyssesian said:

Honestly, if this is done too much, it adds to the feeling of watching TV. You go "oh there's a next episode or a previous episode". The MCU is basically a bidbudget TV series. 

We've returned to the days of the theater matinee serials! One day several decades from now a director will look back at this time and make an homage film, that spawns a new cultural zeitgeist. It's like Ring Theory, but in our world.

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