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What makes a good shot?

Discussion in 'Archive: The Amphitheatre' started by halibut, Jul 14, 2002.

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  1. halibut

    halibut Ex-Mod star 8 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Aug 27, 2000
    I realise this could be borderline JCC, but I think we can keep it Amphiworthy.

    What do you think makes a good shot? Is it one that makes you think "How did they do that", or should it not be noticable. Which shots in films have stood out for you, and why? Do you find that certain directors favour certain types of shot?

    I started this because I'm watching Batman Returns, and the thing that stands out for me in this movie is the establishing shot for "Arctic World". It's a 20-second flythrough of the whole zoo before resting on the final destination - it just screams "Tim Burton" at me

    See the Director's thread.
  2. pkloa

    pkloa Jedi Master star 4

    May 8, 2002
    the most distinctive shots are by stanley kubrick. in almost all of his movies, there are extreme angles and off center close-ups. when one sees a person's face at a 45 degree angle, larger than life, one knows kubrick was directing. i don't know if these are considered "good" by the filmmaking society, but i think they are definitely trademarked and copywrited stanley kubrick.
  3. Radiohead

    Radiohead Jedi Padawan star 4

    Mar 31, 2002
    How come no one uses my [link=]thread about directors and directing[/link]?
  4. MasterPulp

    MasterPulp Jedi Youngling star 3

    Apr 17, 2002
    I think a good shot requires good composition, seamless technical difficulty, foreshadowing, characterization, mood or just sheer beauty.

    I was watching The Usual Suspects for the first time this weekend and was struck by the shot in the office building that seems to be a reflection off the glass of an inner wall of the conference room. You see Kobayashi and an exterior building, then a silhouette passes across the shot, exposing Keaton behind the glass. It really blew me away, not just for its impossibility but the poignancy in the mood of it.
  5. Devilanse

    Devilanse Jedi Knight star 5

    May 11, 2002
    Well for me, a good shot involves a shot glass, and a bottle of Wild Turkey. LOL. Sorry, couldn't resist.
  6. CloneofPhanan

    CloneofPhanan Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jul 20, 2000
    A good shot in my book communicates exactly what it was meant to communicate, but it must also communicate necessary information. That was one of my complaints about the Lord of the Rings, I felt that there were too many establishing shots that didn't really communicate anything new but the fact that they had beautiful sets and locations, and all the close-ups of the ring were pretty unnecessary.

    An example of good shots would be Fight Club, I feel that the cinematography in that movie was excellent.
  7. The Jedi Apprentice

    The Jedi Apprentice Jedi Master star 4

    Nov 29, 1999
    Just recently I saw 'Road to Perdition', and one shot I absolutely loved is when Tom Hanks walks into a hotel hallway, and the camera begins above like an ariel shot, then pans down a bit and moves along the ceiling, then it slowly pans down in front of Hanks as he cocks his weapon. What made that shot good? The feeling at the moment, and just the sheer beauty of it. It was a fantastically composed shot.
  8. MasterPulp

    MasterPulp Jedi Youngling star 3

    Apr 17, 2002
    I haven't seen that yet, but if I do, I'll watch for it.
  9. Saint_of_Killers

    Saint_of_Killers Jedi Youngling star 5

    Feb 18, 2001
    A quality scope and an AP round.
  10. jedimaster chris

    jedimaster chris Jedi Master star 2

    Nov 1, 1999
    To me a good shot is when the main actor's emotions can be determined by the direction or position the camera is, compared to the actor.

    Also, what is in the shot is what makes it great. Not only the actors, but props, or objects, and their placement in the scene.

    I think this helps a shot greatly.
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