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Can we retire the phrase "film look"?

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David Braswell
Can we retire the phrase "film look"?
on Nov 24, 2009 at 5:18:58 pm

Warning: Pure rant ahead.

As a lover and admirer of film I don't say this lightly. With the advancement of digital cameras and datacentric workflows, film has taken some knocks in recent years. And I admit to using the phrase myself on really inspired shoot days (I'm in therapy for this). But isn't it time to shift the focus from achieving the film look to one of achieving the look that best tells the story?

Anyone who's seen uncorrected film understands that often a lot of the magic happens in the color grading process. Perhaps we should talk about the DaVinci look, or the Colorista look. Anyway, it's just an observation as I see film manufacturers ramping up their advertisements.

Slinking back to my beloved and much used Sapphire Film (Arrghh!) Plugin.



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Mark Suszko
Re: Can we retire the phrase "film look"?
on Nov 24, 2009 at 5:50:50 pm

I'm never going to call what I do "filming" unless actual Kodak stock is involved. I would consider it too pretentious myself.


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Arnie Schlissel
Re: Can we retire the phrase "film look"?
on Nov 24, 2009 at 7:20:08 pm

If Michael Mann can ditch the "film look", so can we.

Anyway, most post "film look" nonsense looks like crap. The best way to get a "film look" is to light & compose properly- and use a damn tripod!

Arnie

Post production is not an afterthought!
http://www.arniepix.com/


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Stephen Smith
Re: Can we retire the phrase "film look"?
on Nov 24, 2009 at 10:40:02 pm

I've heard the "make this look like film" phrase a lot. However, I've never heard someone say..."Can you make this film look like video?" That should tell us a lot.




Stephen Smith
Utah Video Productions

Check out my Motion Training DVD

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Scott Sheriff
Re: Can we retire the phrase "film look"?
on Nov 24, 2009 at 11:16:18 pm

I suppose you can retire this phrase, when people with digital VIDEO cameras stop shooting at 24fps and pretending they are Cronenweth.


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Mike Cohen
Re: Can we retire the phrase "film look"?
on Nov 25, 2009 at 12:55:55 am

I seem to recall that in making Be Kind Rewind, Michel Gondry rigged up a way to use the VHS camera depicted in the film to record the images depicted as the Sweeded films but recorded to some non-VHS format, and then used in the final film. So they made film look like video by using video.

If a client says "when can we do the filming?" I am not going to correct them, I am going to do all the filming they want with my video camera. Discussions of semantics are for forums and for beer drinking.

Mike Cohen


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David Braswell
Re: Can we retire the phrase "film look"?
on Nov 25, 2009 at 2:31:39 am

Touche. Much video 24fps looks like crap as the shooters don't understand (or the producers don't care) safe pan speed.



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Fernando Mol
Re: Can we retire the phrase "film look"?
on Nov 25, 2009 at 3:56:01 am

Maybe the concept of film look will never disappear. It may evolve. As viewers get more sophisticated, storytellers will have a wider range of "looks" to get an emotional hit into our minds.

Or maybe as consumer camcorders get a more filmy look, we will gradually forget what was the video look at all!

But that day is not today. When someone ask me for the "film look" I just say yes and keep shooting as planned.

*Always share a link to your site and rate the posts. This is a free service for you and for us.


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Dan Archer
Re: Can we retire the phrase "film look"?
on Nov 30, 2009 at 11:12:12 pm

Im for it. I am tired of clients asking for "Film Look" and having no clue what that is. As well as "Are we shooting 24P?" They can even tell me what it is or why they want it. If producer A shoots 24P Producer B has to shoot 24P so his project is not inferior to producer A's, and while were at it can you add the film look? Producer A doesn't have that.........

A cut is a cut & a dissolve is a disolve, and not just anybody with a system is a pro.


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Tim Kolb
Re: Can we retire the phrase "film look"?
on Nov 25, 2009 at 1:26:25 pm

[David Braswell] "But isn't it time to shift the focus from achieving the film look to one of achieving the look that best tells the story?"

I couldn't agree more, but we aren't an industry of shades of gray...

Most of us are still trained to see film dynamic range and framerate as storytelling...and interlaced video as 'live'.

...and everyone wants to be a storyteller.







TimK,
Director, Consultant
Kolb Productions,


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