Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Michael Mann and the Cinematic Close Up

A recent post over at wrightonfilm.com explains well why Mann films are something to savour, and never rush. The author examines Mann's use of extreme close ups of the characters he creates in his films. It is purist film making, making the actor create the moment intimately with the camera, there to bring us into the character's inner world.

Enjoy the article, which includes an insightful quote from Michael Mann:
I look for where or how to bring the audience into the moment, to reveal what somebody’s thinking and what they’re feeling, and where it feels like you’re inside the experience. Not looking at it, with an actor performing it, but have an actor live it, and you as audience, if I could bring the audience inside to experience. It became critical in THE INSIDER, because the ambition was to make a film that was as suspenseful as I knew, and dramatic as I knew those lives really were. And, it’s all talking heads, but the devastation, the potential devastation to [Jeffrey] Wigand and Lowell Bergman was total annihilation, personal annihilation, suicide–all that was in the cards for these guys. And, yet, it’s all just people talking. So, that kind of began an exploration into how I could bring you into experience in as internal a way as I could.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Mugabe and the White African

As I write this post I am watching Mugabe and the White African. It is a profoundly moving and bravely made feature length documentary about the violent displacement of white African farmers by the Zanu-PF Zimbabwean government under the leadership of Robert Mugabe.

This post has on this rare occasion nothing to do with Michael Mann. I post it here because I want to voice their cry for justice and what it means in a world that is losing its sense of justice. I also post it here as one of the most outstanding documentaries I have ever seen. Directed by Lucy Bailey and Andrew Thompson, it is breathtakingly well shot and reminds me very much of the styles of Michael Mann, especially in the film The Insider. I really hope Michael Mann sees this. I hope everyone sees this.

See their website here.