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961  Films of Sergio Leone / Other Films / Re: McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971) on: July 08, 2005, 04:59:21 PM
they used a technique called "flashing" where they expose the negative to light before they develope it. Supposed to give it a sepia toned aged look.

I've worked a bit as a cinematographer in the past (not on a feature film though, unfortunately). Flashing film stock was a technique a number of cinematographers used in the 1970 with colour stock.

Back then the stuff labs churned out had notoriously poor contrast. If you were shooting in the kind of "naturalistic", low light looks which Coppola, Scorsese and Altman (f'r instance) were after, you ended up with huge slabs of black shadows with a few highlights.

Flashing the stock before shooting meant that you could kick loads more detail and contrast in those shadow areas, improving eye lights etc.

Any sepia look would have been produced during the printing stage, and not in pre production or in shooting, (though filters can be used to enhance this).

Of course Leone shooting in brilliant sunlight in Almeria didn't have any of these worries. By the time he shot ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA, film stock latitudes had improved immensely, so there was no need for it.

Going back to MRS MILLER, it seems to me that this film was an enormous influence on ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA. Both films have very similar plots, similar sexual dynamics, similar material motivations for the characters, both feature opium dens, etc. Unfortunately, I've only seen MRS MILLER once, many years ago, but I was greatly struck by how much these two films chimed together. I may be wrong, but don't they even end with identical shots?

Leone does use this same shot in ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST, so this may be Leone quoting Altman quoting Leone. Huh

Certainly Leone was an admirer of Altman. What is the name of the store over the road from Fat Mo's? ALTMAN'S.
962  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: Terorist Attacks on: July 08, 2005, 02:16:28 PM
Hi everyone. I live in London, and trying to get my mind off things last night I was trawling round the web and found this fantastic forum for one of my all time fave directors. It seems (unlike too many other on-line forums) a mighty civilised place, full of informed and intelligent folk.

After a good long read I'm looking forward to contributing to the debates. Oh, and I've gotta get an avatar.

I was out and about in London today, and people just seem to be getting on with life. I got a (crowded) bus home, and noticed that everybody had a good look round when they got on, checking for stray bags etc. It felt very odd doing something so common place which suddenly had a possibility of danger around it.

I walked past King's Cross (one of the bombed stations), and you could barely move for what seemed like hundreds of camera crews. The same story again at the top of Tavestock Road, with plastic sheets screening the destroyed bus. As an added surreal touch, I was there as a group of "living museum" actors were milling around dressed as soldiers and nurses from WWII.

I saw last night some moronic terrorist web site claiming London is "quaking in terror". Nothing is further from the truth. Ciao, a tutti.
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