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Tips for shooting an intense action scene?

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Nick Army
Tips for shooting an intense action scene?
on Jul 23, 2008 at 12:42:00 pm

Hi, I may have the chance to shoot an intense action scene at work soon -and if not for work, I'll do it on my own- so I was wondering if anyone knows of any articles, published literature, or has personal experience and/or clips to share that will help me shoot an action scene -possibly the beginning rush of a hostage situation- and keep the intensity HIGH!

Naturally, I have some of my own ideas and I think time remapping and fast, disorienting editing along with a good sound track will help immensely. But this is a cinematography forum, so I'm curious about the actual shooting process. Lots of shots, and an unchained camera seem like a necessity and shots that lend themselves to time remapping would be great of course. And it also seems like I would want to stay pretty tight the whole time and maybe even clamp in as the scene progresses.

But what have I missed here? These are just the very basics. Thanks a lot in advance, it's always a pleasure to learn from those with more experience, and I am excited to shoot my first action scene after scores of very slow shoots.


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Rob Grauert
Re: Tips for shooting an intense action scene?
on Jul 24, 2008 at 5:00:29 pm

I think tight, shaky, fast cutting footage will serve you will. But keep in mind that your sound design is what sells it.

Robert J. Grauert, Jr.


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Nick Army
Re: Tips for shooting an intense action scene?
on Jul 24, 2008 at 5:30:42 pm

I agree 100%, but I'm also not sure about the aesthetic ethics or merit of that after reading over some fantastic writing from David Bordwell about the style of the Bourne Ultimatum. Still, it's not necessarily a bad thing for it to be superficial since it's only going to be about 30 seconds with only the most basic plot points and aims to be visceral above all. He also dissects the action scene in a post here, which is a nice resource for anyone trying to get a handle on the anatomy.



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todd mcmullen
Re: Tips for shooting an intense action scene?
on Jul 24, 2008 at 5:58:59 pm

Well there are a number of tips and styles to amp up you images. Obviously hand held camera and interesting angle and lighting is a bonus. a good quick pacing in editing is also good. And you can add some additional ambiance to your scene to give it another level of depth, ie...rain, snow, smoke, moving traffic, you get the idea
go for broke

You can check out some examples at my website; here I think

http://www.toddmcmullen.com

cheers

Todd McMullen
Flip Flop Films
Austin
http://www.toddmcmullen.com


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