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why is this "too wide?"


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Who says it's too wide?  It boils down to personal taste largely.  For me, the wider the better.

BUT there is the issue of viewing device.  If you're a youngin,' consuming all your vids on the intertubes through a mobile device, you are sacrificing a lot of screen real estate to those black bars.  Reminds me of the time I was stuck on a long trip in the back of a minivan and popped the widescreen of Sparticus into the VHS (it was an old minivan) and it was both amusing and sad, how small the image was.  I could barely make out the dimple in Kirk Douglas' chin...

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I saw nofilmschool recently has a post on varying aspect ratios in recently new films, I guess it's a way to be different, And it's better serve the story visually.

Taylor wants you to focus on her music, not image, that's what I can tell when I watched that video on my tiny iPhone 5 screen. :-) 

 

I missed that article...have there been any films that are pushing close to 4:1? Not that I've seen.

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It's not necessarily 

but because it's non standard it may be seen as a gimmick

a gimmick is fine in something designed to be a promo, sometimes preferable

but for narrative many stay traditional so that such deviation from standards doesn't detract from the story so much

thats probably why many don't do it

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Is it too wide? Only if you're watching it on a tiny small screen - a phone for example.

Try & see if you can find/watch an original version of Ben Hur or How The West Was Won.

At a certain point in the history of cinema (1950s), the big screen had to compete with the small screen & the gimmick of widescreen, in all its different flavours, was born - Cinemascope, VistaVision, Todd-AO, Kinopanorama, Cinemiracle, Technirama, Techniscope etc...

The widescreen standard first came into being in 1957 (2.35:1) & then updated in 1970 (1.39:1).

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It's not necessarily 

but because it's non standard it may be seen as a gimmick

a gimmick is fine in something designed to be a promo, sometimes preferable

but for narrative many stay traditional so that such deviation from standards doesn't detract from the story so much

thats probably why many don't do it

But literally hundreds of millions of people watched that video (I think that's about double the amount of people that saw Avatar), and none of the commentors mention it being a gimmick. They just think it looks cool. I guess my point is that there might just be more acceptance out there amongst the unsophisticated public for crazy wide ratios than we think.

Is it too wide? Only if you're watching it on a tiny small screen - a phone for example.

Try & see if you can find/watch an original version of Ben Hur or How The West Was Won.

At a certain point in the history of cinema (1950s), the big screen had to compete with the small screen & the gimmick of widescreen, in all its different flavours, was born - Cinemascope, VistaVision, Todd-AO, Kinopanorama, Cinemiracle, Technirama, Techniscope etc...

The widescreen standard first came into being in 1957 (2.35:1) & then updated in 1970 (1.39:1).

Those are all Academy ratios, I'm talking about 3.56:1.

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I'll get right on that.

Can I get aboard that too? :d

The key, in terms of narrative, is to justify the bizarre ratio inside your plot or concept, not loosely but in a way that the audience thinks it couldn't have been done any other way.

About the number of views for the music video, Taylor Swift's piece has 6 minutes while Avatar has 162, plus one is available for free online while the other people had to pay in order to watch, so I think these factors make a difference.

It's not that they accept it, it's more like they don't really care if it looks cool. The absolute majority of the audience (I'd risk 99% of it) doesn't have a clue of what the hell is anamorphic. People just want to enjoy it, not dissect it and analyze it. That's what WE do (and love), so when we see something that brings both elements together (entertainment and technical finesse), we flip about it.

Now... I don't even remember why I started to write that.

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Can I get aboard that too? :d

The key, in terms of narrative, is to justify the bizarre ratio inside your plot or concept, not loosely but in a way that the audience thinks it couldn't have been done any other way.

About the number of views for the music video, Taylor Swift's piece has 6 minutes while Avatar has 162, plus one is available for free online while the other people had to pay in order to watch, so I think these factors make a difference.

It's not that they accept it, it's more like they don't really care if it looks cool. The absolute majority of the audience (I'd risk 99% of it) doesn't have a clue of what the hell is anamorphic. People just want to enjoy it, not dissect it and analyze it. That's what WE do (and love), so when we see something that brings both elements together (entertainment and technical finesse), we flip about it.

Now... I don't even remember why I started to write that.

Tito, I pretty much agree with everything you said.

This is the aspect ratio I've decided to do for my next short. Wide is great! Oh and it's mobile platform only release!

00649020.00_00_50_04.Still001.png

Now that is too wide. Way too wide.

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  • 5 years later...
On 10/17/2015 at 2:05 AM, Turboguard said:

This is the aspect ratio I've decided to do for my next short. Wide is great! Oh and it's mobile platform only release!

00649020.00_00_50_04.Still001.png

Brilliant - really made me laught! I'm going to name this 'TurboVision'. It's a good example of a reductio ad absurdum - clearly this level of wideness could only work as a joke or extreme gimmick, it restricts the information flow so much. 

The Taylor Swift video I thought worked (for me anyway) as an artistic choice. I was viewing it on a 14inch laptop screen, so still a good sized image in terms of seeing plenty of detail. It did come across as slightly gimmicky, as it was obviously a deliberate and somewhat 'forced' choice, and in terms of composition some of the shots would have benefited from a slightly less extreme wide image. But mostly it was composed with the wide ratio in mind, and worked ok. (I would be less happy if having to view it on a phone, with the major loss of detail implied). 

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On this topic of wide crops, I've got an example here which is a still photo of mine (Fuji XT3) rather than a film. It was originally a fairly boring standard ratio photo  of a field, which I was about to discard as not worth printing. But I noticed that if I just took a relatively small proportion of this as a wide crop lower to the ground, it was more visually interesting (and made a nice print in A4 width). No reason this perspective couldn't work as an occasional shot in a film also, with the radical shift in perspective jolting the viewer's attention. Though hopefully done in a way that the crop shows integrity as an image, that it's being done for an authentic visual reason, rather than as a gimmick. As here -  the crop focusing the viewer's attention on the world of the rich abundance of small flowers just a foot or two above the ground.

1268347903_wideplantsmallcrop.thumb.jpg.d96ab9edd90d1eb6e0ccce18427e8ed6.jpg

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