Dances With Wolves
Credit: Alpha Coders
I chose the most recent of the movie selections, hoping to find that there would be more cinematography aspects incorporated in the film. About an hour into the film, I already noticed patterns that the director seemed to be using while filming. Using the tips from Becoming Better Photographers, I tried to pick out a few tips that the director was using in order to enhance the picture.
Contrast: I noticed a lot of contrast, and this tool is used in addition to the lighting. Whenever there seemed to be a sunset, or a well lit background, the objects (most of the time the main characters) were darker, creating a harsh contrast between the two objects.
Perspective: Whenever the scene became more intense, I noticed that much of the cinematography changed. but especially the perspective of the camera. It either seemed to zoom in very closely to the subjects face to show the detail, or it showed the scene from a lower angle, trying to make the viewer feel like he is a part of the action.
Depth: When there are nature pictures shown, they look like they have so much depth. It almost seems like you can see for miles and miles. Its a beautiful shot. From what I have learned, this could be due to the fact that the camera man is using a very wide lens in order to capture every angle. He could have also picked a point at which the landscape converged, in order to make it look like the land went on forever.
Lighting: Again, the lighting changes with the drama that the scene brings. It seems to be that in the more positive scenes, there are bright lights. Even when it is night time, the campfire will be brighter or the faces will be shown more clearly. When the drama increases, the lighting dims as the music gets louder. This causes the viewer to seem like they are anxious like the soldiers are.
Foreground/Background: This last technique is used quite a few times. I noticed that it was especially used in conjunction with contrast. At a few points in the movie, there would be a blurred dark subject in the foreground, while a lighter beautiful background would be shown behind them. This gives more things for the viewer to look at and keeps it interesting.
Critique: Looking at the specific aspects of the cinematography gave me more respect for how the movie is made. I also paid way much more attention to detail than I would have if I would be watching another movie. I believe that the use of the technique in addition the the beautiful scenery gave it a more positive or intense feel. My only critique for the movie is that it ran a bit too long for my taste, and I felt bored after an hour and a half. I feel like it could have easily ended well before when it did. However, maybe its time for me to pay more attention to detail in the movies that I do watch.