High-Def Digest's Favorite Bookmarks: August 2011 - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 08-24-2011, 03:09 PM
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Default High-Def Digest's Favorite Bookmarks: August 2011

Welcome back to another edition of High-Def Digest's favorite bookmarks, where we spotlight some great scenes from various Blu-ray titles that we've found ourselves revisiting again and again:

http://www.highdefdigest.com/news/sh...gust_2011/7511
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Old 08-24-2011, 04:24 PM
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Well, I'm at work so I dont know the actual time in the film, but I want to share my feelings about the diner scene between Vincent (Al Pacino) and Neil (Robert DeNiro) in HEAT. First of all, I love how the scene comes about. Vincent is tracking him from the helicopter, then transfers to a car, then pulls him over like a common police officer. Neil totally complies, but is ready for anything. The tension is building already. Vincent approaches with his gun drawn, as Neil pulls HIS gun out and gets ready. As Vincent says "How ya doin'?, whataya say I buy you a cup of coffee?" You sense immediate respect between the two, even though Neil is a cop killer, Vincent has to play this chess game REALLY smart. As they start to talk at the diner, you find yourself hanging on everyword. Vincent actually tries to get Neil out of the life, just buy talking. I love the moment when Neil says "What the F is that? Barbecues and ball games?" Vincent starts to smile and says "Yea...." like he's educating him on a normal life. The way these two exchange back and forth eventually puts you at ease, and you think for a moment it might work itself out. But when Vincent starts tells him he doesn't want to have to take him down, the mood gets right back on point. Check out Neil's snarl right before he says "There's a flip side to that coin...." That always gives me chills...It really gets you set up for act II! The head bad guy, talking with the head good guy in a public place. It's almost like a timeout in a fight, or a pitstop in a race! AWESOME.
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Old 08-25-2011, 09:23 AM
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Default Children of Men single edit

You talked about there being a hidden edit in the single shot Children of Men scene, but I can't seem to find any evidence that there is one. Matter of fact interviews with the cast/crew confirm that it was a single shot:

w w w.accessatlanta.com/movies/content/movies/stories/2006/12/28/1229MMscene.html

edit: I can't link to a url yet, so here is the article:

By STEVE MURRAY
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Published on: 12/29/2006

The futuristic thriller "Children of Men" (now playing) has three breathtaking sequences filmed in single, unbroken tracking shots. But the one near the end of the film — lasting some nine minutes — is a near miracle of technical inventiveness and, well, just plain luck.

Star Clive Owen races through a bombed-out landscape of tenements and cratered streets that resembles wartime Bosnia. The camera follows as he dodges gunfire and explosions, running over rubble, inside buildings and through crowded corridors and stairways in search of a young woman.
Universal Studios


Theo (Clive Owen) ducks a bomb blast in the thriller "Children of Men." A long tracking shot near the end of the movie took 14 days to set up and film.

Amid all that chaos, the camera never cuts away.

So how'd they do that? Director Alfonso Cuarón explains.

The location was a cluster of buildings in Bexhill-on-Sea in England's East Sussex district, which the film crew secured as a filming location for 14 days. Most of those days were spent rigging the area with explosive special effects, rehearsing the countless extras fighting in the streets, and mapping out the complex route Owen (and cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki) would follow.

"Day 12 arrives, and we haven't even rolled camera yet," Cuarón says. "Everyone gets nervous — particularly the accountants."

Finally, on the 13th day, he attempted to shoot the sequence for the first time. "And it's a fiasco," he recalls. Accidents and blunders ruined the shot. Every time he had to start over, Cuarón's crew needed several hours to move the tanks back into place, re-rig explosives in the street and walls, and equip ill-fated extras (the ones caught in the movie crossfire) with fresh blood packs. (More about the blood later.)

Not only was Cuarón facing the loss of his film location, he was also shooting in the middle of a bleak English winter — when daylight can last as little as six hours.

The director was, um, a little anxious on Day 14, his last chance to shoot the scene as planned.

On his first attempt, things were going great ... until six minutes into the shot, when the cameraman stumbled.

"We only have one more chance," Cuarón remembers. And by the time everyone was ready to try again, the sun was already lowering into the west.

"We start to shoot, and everything is going great," the director says. Ducking gunfire, Owen hides inside a derelict schoolbus. But a female extra also inside the bus gets "hit" by a bullet — and her exploding blood pack spatters the camera lens red.

"I yell cut," Cuarón says. "But thank God there is an explosion and nobody hears me."

Owen keeps running, the camera pursues, and seven minutes later, the actor and cinematographer are jumping around, exhilarated at completing the shot.

"Everyone is going, 'Whooo!' " Cuarón says. "Such exhilaration. Clive is so wired after running and ducking.

"But I said, 'Yes, guys, but the [bleeping] shot is ruined — the blood hit the lens.'

"And the two of them turn at me with this mad face and say, 'Are you crazy? That was the miracle!' "

In fact, Owen and Lubezki had to remind Cuarón of the aesthetic philosophy he himself brought to shooting "Children of Men": He wanted it to feel as though every scene on-screen is unfolding in the moment, that anything — good, bad or bloody — could happen in an instant.

"That is what you're craving for," he admits, "the accidents. Truthfulness comes from what you don't create. You choreograph a lot of stuff to look improvised. But the beautiful moments are the ones you would never imagine."

Keen-eyed moviegoers can be forgiven for thinking there's an invisible cut somewhere in those nine minutes. After all, at the end of the scene, the blood on the lens has vanished.

Well, not really. "The blood was great, but after a while it started to feel like it was on your face," Cuarón says. "It started to feel distracting." So he hired a computer-effects artist to digitally erase the blood from the final image, a very painstaking job.

"It was the biggest nightmare on planet Earth," he says, "and apparently she hated us every single second."

Last edited by Cathan; 08-25-2011 at 09:25 AM. Reason: added info
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Old 08-25-2011, 03:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cathan View Post
You talked about there being a hidden edit in the single shot Children of Men scene, but I can't seem to find any evidence that there is one. Matter of fact interviews with the cast/crew confirm that it was a single shot:
Hmm, I've actually read a lot of conflicting reports about this scene, and could have sworn that there was indeed a cut at the point Theo enters the building, but that article definitely states otherwise. However, a quick Google search again pulls up some conflicting information implying that there might actually be more than one cut.

From Wikipedia:
Quote:
The coffee shop scene was composed of "two different takes shot over two consecutive days"; the car ambush was shot in "six sections and at four different locations over one week and required five seamless digital transitions"; and the battlefield scene "was captured in five separate takes over two locations".
and IMDB:
Quote:
According to an article in issue 110 of Cinefex, the sequence consists of six or seven shots filmed over several weeks in at least three locations: Bushey Hall in Hertfordshire, a disused Air Force base in Upper Heyford in Oxfordshire, and a studio set in Pinewood.
While those sites aren't always the most reliable for info, there does seem to be some debate on the issue. Either way, I'm inclined to go with the source you posted and will edit my article accordingly. Thanks for pointing that out.
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Old 08-25-2011, 03:29 PM
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Could they be referring to the entire battle sequence and not just the single shot portion of it? There is more to the battle than just that long extended shot.
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Old 08-25-2011, 03:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cathan View Post
Could they be referring to the entire battle sequence and not just the single shot portion of it? There is more to the battle than just that long extended shot.
Yes, they definitley could, but the quotes aren't specific, and they are included in sections specifically addressing hidden transitions for the long takes. Again though, unless I ever come across something that more specifically says otherwise, the article you posted seems to be the most definitive source on this issue.
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