Alexander Film Works

What We See, What We Hear

In Roughly About Films on January 17, 2012 at 2:47 pm

This being the start of a new category for this blog, “Roughly About Film”, I’ll be discussing several things that have at least a peripheral connection with film and filmmaking.

How close I come is up to you to judge.

This term, hopefully my last at Wayne State University, is focused on my “capstone” class, Techniques of Film and Video Production.  We get to work on three fifteen-minute (or so) videos shot by the class on the Communications Department’s spanking new Canon 5D DSLR cameras.  These units are supposed to be the “cutting edge” units used in the “real world” today.

I’ve got my quibbles about this, but that’s not relevant to the class itself.

We are supposed to be using Redrock Micro 35mm lens adapters, which give a more “cinematic” shallow depth of field, allowing rack focusing, image highlighting by focus (or lack thereof), and a more cinematic “feel” to the finished footage.

I think that if you want your finished footage to look “cinematic”, you should shoot with a film camera.  Because of the expense, the difficulty of getting quick processing of film nowadays, and, well, the expense, this is not being done.

Go figure…

If it were up to me (and you can bet your tochis it’s not), someone who owned their own equipment could use it to shoot whatever they were going to shoot for the class.  I mean, if you’re comfortable with the equipment, you’re going to use it well, right?  You can get more out of it than you can with something you don’t know much about.

Well, that’s enough about that… on to something a little more pleasant.

***

The silent film The Artist won three awards at the Golden Globes… which was a surprise, and a pleasure.  Jean Dujardin, the lead, won Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy,  the musical score by Ludovic Bource won in that category, and the  picture itself won Best Picture, Musical or Comedy.

A black and white silent picture winning awards in the early years of the Twenty-First Century is a remarkable achievement, especially since these pictures haven’t been made since the early days of the Twentieth Century.

Something to think about, n’est-ce pas?

***

There’s been a great deal of talk that I’ve read of in the trade press that I can get; the word is flying about that “FILM IS DEAD”.  The three biggest manufacturers of motion picture cameras are producing no more new models; Panavision, Aaton, and Arri have confirmed they stopped producing new film cameras.

I’m morally certain, however, that the Russian factories that produced the inexpensive 16mm and 35mm cameras one might still find on eBay are still in operation.  It wouldn’t be like those budding capitalists to abandon a niche market like that.

I’d have to put more research into it, though.

Sometime again, friends!

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