It's a bird, it's a crane....

>> Friday, August 30, 2013

Hat tip to Forrest Wickman at Slate for this one.  Colin Solal Cardo shot this music video for Phoenix's "Entertainment" in a single take using a drone, and it's pretty goddamn badass (the song is pretty decent, too): the camera swoops in, the kind of shot you used to have to rent a helicopter for, then hovers in front of the band, swoops up into the air, comes down for the kind of tracking shot Adrien Maben used so effectively in Live At Pompeii (for instance) except Maben had to lay down yards of track to orbit the band like that.

It makes you want to see what a feature director could do with something like that.  No doubt if Stanley Kubrick had a flying robot camera for The Shining, that famous opening with the family driving up into the mountains would have been one superlong take.  I'm sure Christopher Nolan could have a helluva lot of fun with a drone and shiny new toys are all in James Cameron's wheelhouse (not that I'm saying that Nolan and Cameron, both of whom I love dearly, necessarily belong in the same paragraph as Kubrick).  Hell, this kind of shot is exactly the kind of thing Orson Welles and Alfred Hitchcock kind of screwed up because they had the idea but not the tools (especially with Welles, I'm thinking that famous opening tracking shot in Touch Of Evil or several of the trick shots in Citizen Kane where Welles had to sneak splices between model shots and crane shots, e.g. the Xanadu gates shot at the beginning of the film or that wonderful swoop and dive through the skylight when we meet Susan Alexander and find out what she's been up to lately).

Beautiful stuff.  See--drones ain't all bad....


John Healy Friday, August 30, 2013 at 1:37:00 PM EDT  

Rock 'n Roll. Reports of it's demise are still greatly exaggerated.

PaulM Friday, August 30, 2013 at 6:23:00 PM EDT  

One of the most impressive shots I've ever seen is the last scene of Kenneth Branagh's Much Ado About Nothing. One long swoop, from a close-up, through the castle, all the way to a high-overhead. Amazing, brilliant, and makes me gasp every time.

Eric Friday, August 30, 2013 at 9:51:00 PM EDT  

Oo! It's been a long time since I've seen that one, Paul; I'd forgotten about that.

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