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Handmade vs. CNC* movies


slaytonf
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There is a quality about the look of modern movies that always irritated me, especially the larger-budget movies with visual fireworks.  It was something I that just didn't sit right with me, and distracted my attention from the rest of the movie--regardless of whether it was worth attention to.  For a long time I could not figure out what it was, then I discovered it.  Ever since cameras started to be controlled by computers (starting with Star Wars), there has been an explosion in the, well, muscularity of the ways cameras move.  I'm not talking about computer generated imagery, though it's often combined with computer-controlled photography, but the substitution of computer actuated motors replacing human bodies muscling around the camera.  Admittedly, there is a great development in how the viewer is moved, or sometimes yanked, through a scene, sailing, surging, soaring, ducking, diving, turning--moving veritably like an otter through water.  And all exactly done.

 

In fact, too exactly.  No flaws, no bumps.  Perfectly, errorlessly, cleanly, coldly, antiseptically done.  That's what turns me off.  And I'm not even talking about the overuse of technical virtuosity inundating the viewer.  That represents another level of disenchantment.  Until Star Wars, and for a lot of movies since, there is a hand-made quality, even if there is no jerking, or bumping in a moving shot.  You know there was a human, or a number of humans, on the other side of the camera, even if you don't consciously think of it.  I don't know if that adds to the texture, or substance, or whatever you would want to call it, to a movie, but it certainly generates a picture that does not create a visceral reaction in me against it.

 

*CNC--computer numeric control.  A means of controlling a machine--robot--with computer programs.  Most often used in manufacturing.

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I probably don't watch enough 'modern' movies to know what your talking about, as I seem a little shaky as to your meaning. I don't want to put you to work for nothing---I'm interested in what your saying---but would an aptly chosen youtube example or two help illustrate.

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