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1
American Cinematographer asked Deakins "six films that have inspired him as both a film buff and a cinematographer". Among those 6, a film that we tend to appreciate around here was mentioned:

Quote
Leone?s ambitious, atmospheric Western is memorably presented in glorious, widescreen Techniscope. Introduced by Technicolor Italia in 1960, the format utilized a two-perforation negative pulldown per frame instead of the standard four-perf frame common to 35mm photography. Its 2.32:1 aspect ratio could easily be cropped to the 2.35:1 widescreen ratio because it used half the amount of 35mm film stock and standard spherical lenses. Distribution prints for theatrical venues were made by enlarging the frame from a two-perf flat ratio to a four-perf anamorphic ratio. According to cinematographer Delli Colli, this choice suited Leone?s style and saved the production a lot of raw film stock, despite the director?s penchant for shooting plenty of takes.

The movie?s central theme is the fading of the Old West amid relentless modernization and greed, but the narrative can also be viewed as an elegy for the Western genre itself. Each of the characters symbolizes an aspect of the main theme, and while the picture is a veritable mixtape of homages to other famous Westerns, the classic tropes are often revised and reconfigured in new and unexpected ways ? like casting Henry Fonda, known for his famous roles as Western heroes, as the baddest of black-hat bad guys. ?Thematically, it?s similar to The Assassination of Jesse James [by the Coward Robert Ford], or The Wild Bunch,? Deakins says. ?All are about characters whose time is passing on. They can?t keep up, and they feel disconnected with the way the world has gone.?

Deakins notes that the elements of Leone?s signature style, further magnified by composer Ennio Morricone?s immortal score, transform the story into grand opera: iconic set pieces rendered in spectacular widescreen compositions; extremely dynamic close-ups, many featuring solidly center-framed faces or an intense focus on eyes; meticulous staging and blocking; masterful use of depth of field to marry foregrounds and backgrounds; and compelling use of zoom lenses to reframe scenes on the fly. Above all, the narrative is presented visually, with a bounty of small details and some sequences that play out with minimal dialogue. ?It?s a film ? it?s not a novel, and it?s not a radio play,? Deakins observes. ?A film works best when it?s images and sound ? it doesn?t have to be done with dialogue, or linear narrative storytelling. When I?m working on a film, I?m always looking for ways to remove dialogue ? if it?s not needed ? and do a scene visually. I love that.? Citing one of his favorite moments in the film, Deakins says,

?I?ve always enjoyed the initial reveal of Henry Fonda as the bad guy. I read somewhere that Fonda never understood why Leone chose him for the role until the camera came around in that shot to reveal his face. He had played the hero in Young Mr. Lincoln and many other films, yet now he?s this villain telling one of his henchmen to kill a young kid!"

?I also love the sequence where Claudia Cardinale arrives at the railway station and gets into a wagon, and then the camera cranes up majestically. I don?t usually like those kinds of grand, elaborate shots, but Leone is really creating an opera, so that kind of larger-than-life camera movement works. Throughout the movie, he shoots Monument Valley in such a huge way that it?s nowhere near realism ? it?s almost over-the-top. When you combine that kind of style with the magnificent score, it goes beyond simple narrative storytelling and becomes a kind of poetry. It?s magical what film can do sometimes, and no other medium can do that, really.?

Since I know you guys are fond of lists, the full Deakins list can be found right there:
https://ascmag.com/articles/roger-deakins-asc-bsc-six-favorite-films


2
A Fistful of Dollars / 'A Fistful of Dollars' dubbed in Navajo language
« on: November 18, 2021, 01:37:19 AM »
The Navajo Nation Museum has created a new version of "A Fistful of Dollars" dubbed in the Navajo language. The idea is to spread the language. Trailer included in the following link. Please forgive the article for featuring a screengrab from the wrong movie.

https://www.npr.org/2021/11/17/1055897665/dubbing-a-fistful-of-dollars-to-spread-the-navajo-language

Quote
The absence of Native American characters in the spaghetti Western, called B?eso Dah Yin?łjaa' in Navajo, was the perfect choice for dubbing because it didn't contain any offensive stereotypes, Navajo Nation Museum director Manuelito Wheeler told NPR.

I like how Leone's disdain for native americans in western movies just became an antiracist statement.

3
Off-Topic Discussion / ZODIAC (2007) - a film by David Fincher
« on: October 07, 2021, 02:45:39 AM »
We love Zodiac. Zodiac had no thread here. The people wanted a Zodiac thread. There is now a Zodiac thread.
Let's discuss Zodiac.




4
Off-Topic Discussion / Licorcice Pizza (2021)
« on: September 27, 2021, 09:16:45 AM »
So i'm posting this mostly to piss PowerRR's off. Trailer for PTA's upcoming movie (that isn't called Soggy Bottom despite it being an amazing title): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofnXPwUPENo

And yes, that boy is Philip Seymour Hoffman's son.

6
Off-Topic Discussion / First and last shots of "iconic filmmakers"
« on: December 14, 2020, 02:50:46 AM »
Nice montage by Trois Couleurs, that shows the first and last shot of "iconic filmmakers". It seems they only count feature films.

https://vimeo.com/304403176

Some of them look like they were conscientiously planned. Hitchcock and Tarkovski, for instance.
Also, Sergio might have the best last shot, he sure doesn't have the greatest first one.

I love this kind of videos (just like all the "opening and closing shot from great movies" montages): they focus on cinema's grammar and on the inherent value of "the shot" (an idea American filmmakers kind of forgot in the 1990's-2000's and are now coming back to).

8
Off-Topic Discussion / MANK (David Fincher, 2020)
« on: October 08, 2020, 09:38:41 AM »
After an excruciating wait, here is the trailer:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_NqUYwngr0

From Wikipedia:

Quote
Mank is an upcoming American biographical drama film about screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz and his battles with director Orson Welles over screenplay credit for Citizen Kane (1941). The film is directed by David Fincher, based on a script written by his father Jack, and is produced by Fincher, Ce?n Chaffin, Douglas Urbanski, and Eric Roth. The film stars Gary Oldman in the title role, while Amanda Seyfried, Lily Collins, and Charles Dance also star.

Fincher's father Jack wrote the script in the 1990s, and David originally intended to film it after he completed The Game (1997). It never came to fruition, and Jack Fincher died in 2003. Eventually, the project was officially announced in July 2019, and filming took place around Los Angeles from November 2019 to February 2020.

Mank is scheduled to have a limited theatrical run in November 2020, before being digitally released by Netflix on December 4, 2020.


9
Ennio Morricone / Edda Dell'Orso interview
« on: July 09, 2020, 11:57:55 PM »
Edda on Life as a Vocalist in the 1960s and 1970s Plus a Look at Some of her Recent Musical Projects

https://the6thdimension.com/2014/05/22/edda-dellorso-on-life-as-a-vocalist-in-the-1960s-and-1970s-plus-a-look-at-some-of-her-recent-musical-projects/

10
Off-Topic Discussion / Critics Poll: best films of the 2000's
« on: May 23, 2020, 07:42:59 AM »
Yay! Lists! Lists! Lists!

https://www.worldofreel.com/blog/2020/5/jfj030p0dzlzh0u97m5btusmavghk4?fbclid=IwAR1JPMf6w9r0UN9L4KsLSMb0pPzZJHACmbnlOoWERiVIbspviF2j8fPC5_s

Here is the top 10 if you don't want to dig further away:

1) Mulholland Drive (David Lynch)
2) There Will Be Blood (Paul Thomas Anderson)
3) Zodiac (David Fincher)
4) In the Mood For Love (Wong Kar-Wai)
5) No Country For Old Men (Joel Coen)
6) Children of Men (Alfonso Cuaron)
7) Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (Michel Gondry) 
8 ) Spirited Away (Hayao Miyazaki)
9) Yi Yi: A One and A Two (Edward Yang)
10) Lost in Translation (Sofia Coppola)

I'm pretty much ok with that top 10. Sure, I'd alter the order and make room for the departed and a couple of others ones, but that's a good list. I wouldn't kill the guy coming up with that list, which, when it comes to film lists, is a pretty great achievement.

11
Web Site Announcements / BUG: ' or ?
« on: March 12, 2020, 05:17:05 AM »
I don't think I'm the only one affected by this bug, but in every message i post from Safari on an iOS device (iPhone or iPad), all the ' are changed into ?.
I cannot find a way to avoid that, I need to manually edit all these posts from my PC.

12
Off-Topic Discussion / Best Films of the 2010's
« on: December 11, 2019, 11:02:38 AM »
2020 is near, time for some thinking on the decade of movies that's ending. What are your best picks of the decade? Make it top 3, top 10, whatever.

I'm still thinking about my list but here is a first draft in no particular order:

The Social Network
Tree of Life
Inside Llewyn Davis
The Irishman
Mad Max: Fury Road
Gravity
Roma
Scott Pilgrim vs The World
Phantom Thread

Didn't make the cut but hold a special place in my moviegoer's heart:

The Master
Blade Runner 2049
The Lego Movie
Drive
The Wolf of Wall Street
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Whiplash
La La Land
Birdman
Hereditary
First Reformed
Call Me by Your Name
The Witch
The World's End
Baby Driver
Arrival
And may be Once Upon a Time in Hollywood  and Into The Spider-Verse will be in that list some day. Who knows.

And if I had to make a special list for the sick fuck films that I'll probably never watch again but that will stay stuck in brain forever:

Les Garçons Sauvages
A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence



In retrospective, seems like I'm a boring brain-dead millennial who only watches what Hollywood spoon-feeds him.



And here's powerRR's one to save him some time:

2011 : The Tree of Life
2012 : To the Wonder / The Master
2014 : Inherent Vice
2015 : Knight of Cups
2016 : Voyage of Time (yes, even that one)
2017 : Phantom Thread / Song to Song
2019 : A Hidden Life


13
Sergio Leone News / Colt (2020)
« on: May 17, 2019, 02:52:07 AM »
There is probably a thread about that old Leone project somewhere but I cannot find it. Anyway. You guys all know about the TV show "COLT" that Leone never did. There is some news:


Quote
Stefano Sollima, the Italian director known in Hollywood for “Sicario: Day of the Soldado” and TV series “Gomorrah,” is set to shoot “Colt,” an English-language Western based on a Sergio Leone concept. The plan is to start shooting next winter.

“Colt” is being produced by Leone’s children Raffaella and Andrea, via their Leone Film Group. They are shopping the project in Cannes to prospective U.S. partners.

Originally conceived as a TV series, “Colt” takes its cue from the six-shooter packed by Clint Eastwood in “A Fistful of Dollars,” which becomes a narrative device as it is passes from owner to owner throughout the Old West.

Sollima, who is in advanced talks for a top U.S. writer to come on board, has tweaked Leone’s concept so that the gun changes hands between kids.

Whole article with a lot of information right there:

https://variety.com/2019/film/news/soldado-stefano-sollima-colt-sergio-leone-concept-1203217004/?fbclid=IwAR1SMWG1cBtLkDGTUFeXOy4pCtHKCFQzCAAygREr0dcazvMc-_Q3aYANyyY

Solima's Sicario II was interesting. The guy clearly knows how to create tension, charismatic characters and cool action sequences. I hope he will let his images breath more in a western; that was the main (directing) flaw in Sicario II.

14
Once Upon A Time In America / OUATIA Screenplay - first draft
« on: October 20, 2018, 08:00:50 AM »
EDIT: sorry for the too large images that stretch the page, I'll fix it later.

At the Paris exhibit, there were copies of the first draft of the screenplay by Norman Mailer. Interestingly enough, it seems to be written as a two parts movie, the second part of which had an estimated running time of 2 hours and 19 minutes.









Bonus pic: copy of The Hoods signed by Harry Grey.



15
At the Paris exhibit, they have a clip from Italian TV playing called "One Day On The Set Of Once Upon A Time In America". It features an interview of Leone on the set of the scene where old Noodles calls Fat Moe. The intercut the interview with BTS shot of the filming of the whole extended shot (the crane shot of Fat Moe closing his bar that ends on a close up of Noodles in the phone booth). We see Leone doing the scene as Fat Moe, then we see the take, with Leone asking for "less smoke" and stuff like that. Incredible stuff.

Has anybody ever seen it?

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