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"Cinematic" - what does it mean ?
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  • Damn, I bet a cinematic crane is an impressive sight indeed.

  • @BurnetRhoades I think these days they just use construction cranes and make them cinematic in post. ;-)

  • Goanna I just watched that docu-drama you linked to in the other thread. Great story telling. I thought it looked and felt just right because the way it was produced suited the way the blackfellas were telling the story. Loved the honest look of the piece and the way the contemporary footage cut into the historical re-enactments gave it a real meaningful continuity. It wasn't cinematic but that is a good thing because a cinematic approach would have distracted from the no-nonsense family story side of things.

    So what do I mean by cinematic. For me a cinematic approach is an approach that intends to make the work absolutely stand-alone. So yeah working cinematically you are trying to give certain elements their own power to represent the whole. So yeah certain cinematic shots stand alone in evoking the entire movie. The shot could represent the movie. The same goes for the soundtrack, the sounds, music and performances all looked at in isolation could still strongly evoke the movie. I guess now we attach the word cinematic to the shortcuts people apply to elements of a movie which evoke previous cinematic approaches. It becomes a language but one that starts to lose its power by becoming over familiar.

    Perhaps the pervasiveness of cliché is why we prefer to recognise the cinematic in tv, videogames, books and music; than inside another boring film.

  • I, like the others, agree on the story, the feel of the characters and the art of being there (experiencing the impact of the story/film). It can make and break what one can achieve.

    I still can't, for the life of me, understand the debate on frame rates (24p/30p/the notorious 48p). My camera doesn't have the 24p, so I just use the PAL 25p to compensate/do it on post. Is the 24p really important to obtain the cinematic feel, or am I overstating this?

  • @goanna I agree with your post. It bothers me to see people say "I filmed this" or "my new film" or "the hobbit is a great film" lol the words cinematic & film get used in the wrong context 10000 times a day.

    I won't even watch an online edit that has a description of "my latest film" and it's a 2 minuted video with a cat as the thumbnail.

    Now that there have been some movies shot on DSLR, people will buy that exact camera and assume they will have the same results, but most fail to realize there was a $100k lens attached, and another million or so spent on post production.

    I know this isn't entirely on topic with your post, but in the bigger picture, it all relates.

  • "Film" as a term has transcended physical emulsion. That's not new. In fact it hasn't been limited to just referring to physical emulsion by actual filmmakers. "Film" is synonymous with movie or motion picture at its most basic level but it carries a more serious implication as well. All "films" are movies but not all movies are "films", though this is an admittedly snooty perspective.

    Just like "the pen is mightier than the sword" is still a valid phrase even though the most powerful words written these days are likely not written with a pen and the most common implements of oppression and violence are not swords. It would be ridiculous to start claiming people should stop using the phrase.

    You say "wrong context". I say limited perspective.

  • To me cinematic is a look that gives a feeling similar to (or if you wish, in the note of) the following photo made on film about 10 years ago. The film was scanned.


    1024 x 686 - 1M
  • Film itself, or the camera, isn't a guarantee of anything cinematic. I'm reminded that both Star Wars and The Love Boat were shot on the same film with similar cameras, like so many network shows in the 1970s. And while they certainly look better than the soap operas and game shows of their day, shot on video, there's nothing cinematic about The Love Boat (or CHiPS or any of the other shows shot on 35mm).