Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by Chrad

  1. Your posts actually were responding to things I wrote - e.g., I mentioned that Griffith made Intolerance as an apology of sorts partially because he was criticised for furthering Intolerance (in the context of mentioning how this had a flow on to developing the Russian technique - yes, it was worthless as an 'apology') and in your next post you wrote "What's really troubling is the way people seem to think that this film's Pros out weigh it's Cons, when really all it's innovation was done in order to propagate & enhance a narrative that is pure & simply racist to its core. It really is of little consequence whether he then made a film to appologise about what he had done." Another example, at the beginning of this tangent of the conversation I wrote that it was a hugely influential film, and we all know it's racist. Here one of the posts I quoted wrote "To state that we know it's racist, but that's ok because of what it might have given future filmmakers just simply isn't good enough." In both of these cases it definitely does appear you were referencing what I wrote, and I do feel the need to defend myself because both of these things are mischaracterising what I was saying. I don't think anyone is saying that or arguing that the racism of the movie is okay because of its technical advances anywhere, really. I don't think anyone on side with or making allowances for its politics really cares too much about cinema history. What you're saying about other movies doing what Birth did sooner or later is likely true, but how much later would that have happened and how would the winding path that took us to where we were today look different if so? Griffith was incredibly influential in figuring out how to built a grammar around steady cuts back and forward around close ups and medium/wides to depict conversations, and in intercutting different sequences - these are not so much technological leaps forward as they are leaps of imagination. Yes, cinema was going that way anyway but that doesn't mean you can discount the point that this is where it was really starting to take place when talking about the context of cinema history.
  2. In no way have I said that. It's not in any way 'ok'. Stating that it has had a profound influence on the development of the medium isn't excusing it for its propagation of evil in the world, and I have always qualified these statements by acknowledging that its technical innovation stands alongside its ugliness. This is not a defence, this is not excusing it, this is not saying its ok. Its innovation just is. It really can't be overstated, we can't pretend it doesn't exist because we don't like that it is so. The fact that the movie was so incredible technically yet stood for such horrible ideals and had an awful impact on the world is a lesson that aesthetic beauty doesn't necessarily have anything to do with moral virtue - a point which should be obvious, but a lot of people seem to forget. Leni Riefenstahl's work, as you've brought up, is another great example. I absolutely agree it should be understood primarily as a racist film, so I have sought to contextualise my posts that assert its position in the history in the media with acknowledgement of its societal harmfulness. This is just blatantly untrue. The movie was seen the world over. It's considered the first movie to feature complex parallel editing between action, it moved forward the grammar to something approximating what we do today in terms of the movement between wides and close-ups and the way close-ups are used, it was one of the first films to feature night time photography and large scale location photography, etc. It had a similar place to Citizen Kane in its day in taking all the technical advances that had been made in cinema, and finding effective use of them in one film. In that way it changed the expectation of how cinema would work in its aftermath, for audiences and filmmakers. It definitely says something about Hollywood that one of its foundational films is Birth of a Nation. Is it any surprise how little minority representation there is today? You'd be wrong on both counts: I heard it referenced in Australia as a hugely important film to the development of film grammar in the silent era, but also hugely racist and with an awful influence on the world. And, it is a pivotal work in the history of cinematography and directing, whether we like that or not. As for Kurosawa, he was hugely influenced by Griffith and has acknowledged as such.
  3. I actually absolutely agree - I'm not trying to defend the movie or rehabilitate its reputation of whatever. And I don't think Intolerance is a good apology, either, even if such a thing were possible - it's multi-strand narrative doesn't feature a segment about intolerance towards black people by white people. The popularity of Birth of a Nation is considered to be a major reason why the KKK had a resurgence, so it stands as a tremendous force for evil in the world. I don't believe anything can counterweigh that. I just went over to the Wikipedia page. If people don't understand just how much of a milestone this movie was for the formal technique of film (at a point in its infancy when the foundation for everything we take for granted now was being laid), they should just look at the 'Significance' section there. Recognising this film's place in history in its entirety, provided that its cinematic innovation is never referenced without being contextualised by the insidiousness of its footprint on society, doesn't mean you're arguing the movie is good, or that it didn't stand for evil, or that its pros outweigh its cons.
  4. In Australia I heard it spoken of at uni as a major technical innovator that was also incredibly harmful in the message it perpetrated. Not recommended to people, but acknowledged in its context in the history of silent cinema. Citizen Kane is entirely different - an example of the craft of filmmaking really coming together, which you can still learn from today. BOAN is some of the baby steps that eventually lead to that. Griffith is invaluable to the history of cinematic technique, and BOAN was his most popular movie and one of his most ambitious. It's not a pleasant fact but it's there. Since Potemkin was referenced I just remembered an interesting fact. Griffifth's follow up film Intolerance (a subject he took on partly because of the criticism of him as a racist after Birth's release) was hugely popular in the Soviet Union and was studied a lot in the development of the montage technique Eisenstein would become famous for. The point is, stuff is all interlinked. Birth has an important footprint and we can recognise that without celebrating what it stands for morally.
  5. ^ Agree with you on both counts. BOTN's racist context can never be forgotten and should never be separated from talk of its accomplishments. However, we also can't deny it's place in history. It's a sadness and a warning. And re: Hollywood largely targeting kids and teens, a crash is on the way. Increasing corporatisation of the studios has killed risk taking, and the warning signs of audience rebellion are already there.
  6. fuzzynormal is right, because no one was calling filmmaking 'content' in the 70s and 80s or even the 90s or 00s. That wikipedia page you're citing talks about the 'end user' (yuck) for your 'content' before it mentions audience. The proliferation of that term to refer to art is a result of the increasing corporatisation of the entertainment industry. It places everything on the same level as substance free internet filler material. If you have pride in yourself as a storyteller, never call yourself a content creator. Then you should study up more on film history, because Birth of a Nation is a milestone in the development on the medium. We all know it's racist shit. As for this thing about chasing speed, everything has to get faster and faster, let's make 10 minute feature films etc... Check out this ad from 1992. It's the height of the MTV era, everyone's chasing speed, you get ads like this as a result. They've tried to cram the maximum amount of visual information and story elements in possible, because they have faith the audience can grasp it from very little. The result is a total mess. The comedy bits don't land, because nothing has emphasis, and nothing is given enough time to register emotionally beyond the broadest, 'I get what's going on'. Sure, this isn't the height of sophistication in what's possible with ultra fast editing styles and there are times where it could be very suited to the storytelling, but my point in throwing up this ad is that people were trying to push the medium in this direction as far back as 25 years ago. It failed to take off, I would wager, partly because it's not the most suitable way to tell a lot of stories. People don't just want stimulation, stimulation, stimulation, boom, flash, colours, edits. People still like to be immersed in a narrative, where they give it enough time for it to become part of their life. Long form TV is more popular than ever.
  7. A 10 minute feature... You mean a short film? Also can we please not fall for the lie that we should consider ourselves 'content creators'? An earnings report has 'content', a notice board has 'content'. Everything is content. None of us got into this because we love content. What we do is special because it's storytelling. Calling it content is a way to lower its perceived value so that it can be bought and sold on the cheap.
  8. So throw in more processing power. From a user standpoint it makes no sense to have to choose between 8 bit 4:2:0 and RAW with no reasonable in-between option included.
  9. I think last year saw one true American masterpiece: Silence.
  10. The in body IS of the 12-35 and 35-100 are very handy. The Olympus options notably have hard-stop manual focus.
  11. In still mode the difference in field of view is 1.999x, in movie mode it's 2.08x.
  12. Yes, but I mentioned it when I asked, if you think M43 looks 'robotic' in the out of focus transitions, where does S16 come into it for you? A smaller sensor, so the transition between focused and unfocused areas should be more sudden than even M43, but no one would call it 'robotic' or say it isn't cinematic. There's no reason for the 'robotic' thing you're talking about. M43 is nothing but dimensions for the size of a sensor. I challenge you to point to footage that exemplifies this look you're talking about.
  13. Sadly I think that's for the best. It seems their focus is affordable pro equipment, not advanced amateur/artistic equipment lile the Pocket. It's amazing that they once offered such a unique tool at such an affordable price. I think Panasonic are the only company still targeting th 'advanced amateur' segment, bringing professional features down to consumer accessible gear - everyone else is chasing the higher margins up market.
  14. This is a situation where you should actually trust the specs. There is literally no reason that M43 should look more 'robotic' than say, super 16mm, in terms of the look of transitions between in and out of focus. It's total nonsense. Maybe you're looking at images produced with lenses that don't have much of 'pop' in terms of subject separation. That would make sense and could be attributed to optical design. But there's a solution - pick a different lens.
  15. If you're okay with melting the tripod.
  16. The field of view of the GH5 in video mode is about 1.3x wider than the RX100 in video mode. APS-C in video mode has a field of view 1.35x bigger than GH5. This is almost the same as the photo mode field of view difference of 1.33x between APS-C and M43. The difference the proportions of the sensors make is very minimal. If you're not talking about DOF, it's totally psuedo-scientific and neaningless. What you're referring to is a property of the DOF, and if it applies to M43 then surely it must apply to S16 as well.
  17. Yet Panasonic did okay for themselves when they finally got over their fear of 4.
  18. Until it's time to grade and on one hand you've got 10 bit log in a beautiful colohr space and on the other you've got a single fixed 8 bit profile. Sigma are late to FE because they're working on original lens designs instead of just porting their DSLR lenses. I'm interested to see how far they can get the size down.
  19. Why would Sony add 10 bit? They're already number one in this segment. They know most people don't care. Panasonic added 10 bit out to the GH4 only after they'd let their AF100 die. They were replacing both it and the GH3 with that camera. Sony are doing very well with interchangable lens camcorders. Why mess with a good thing? They are in Canon territory now - want pro video features? Better shell out.
  20. Or, it indicates that Sony are still in the practice of protecting their prosumer video cameras.
  21. So not a video camera, really. It's a bit of a gambit. I don't know why people in the market for an FF with amazing autofocus in this price range would pick it over Canikon, where they have the best selection of sport lenses and bodies that won't be a pain to balance them on. With the A7 series they at least had the street market down pretty well.
  22. I only own Voigtlanders at the moment and love them but I've used SLR magic and also really like them. The Olympus lenses I mentioned are interesting because they have auto focus and repeatable manual focus with hard stops.
  23. Give it an improved EVF and internal 10 bit 4K and I'm in. The ability to use MFT and super 35 format lenses on the same camera without adaptors is a great feature.
  24. Chrad

    Why film?

    Film has a unique power because of how closely it resembles dreams. I love the creative posibilities of its language.
  25. Voigtlander primes SLR magic primes Kowa primes Olympus Pro zooms and primes Olympus 17mm and 12mm
  • Create New...