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“Live today”. Just a reminder. (10 replies and 7 comments)

Mike
2 months ago
Mike 2 months ago

Roger and James are being interviewed “Live” today at Noon Pacific time. Tune in to Collider.com at the appropriate time to your area.

Establish the Pacific time from your computer and then adjust your local time + or - to obtain when it’s starts.

Mike
2 months ago
Mike 2 months ago

One of the best interviews you both have done, well worth waiting for. Being at home ofcourse makes all the difference, you looked very comfortable and relaxed. Scratching ones head is a sign of creativity, all creative people do it at some point, some people say it is due to being very sensitive and astute. 

JeeBoo
2 months ago

Yeah, just wish the interviewer asked better questions. The best part was to hear that they have to deal with the same problems like in the case with Shawshank having to shoot interior then EXT then back to INT because of some productions reasons. And the story about 1917, the clouds and the toilet was hilarious .

Alshiblie
2 months ago
Alshiblie 2 months ago

Just done watching it.. Thank you, Roger and James. That was informative and really did enjoy it. 

The Byre
2 months ago
Anca
2 months ago

Thanks for the link.

Roger Deakins
2 months ago
Roger Deakins 2 months ago

I hope it was of interest. I think I wandered off topic a lot but my excuse is that I haven't been talking much lately. Just another day in lock down!

JeeBoo
2 months ago

My girlfriend and i were watching it together and she said: wow, he is talking more than usual, that's probably because of the lock down haha
Anyways, thanks for the talk it was nice to hear stories that brought all of us back to set at very least in our minds.
Now, the real question is was the computer strategically placed to get the key and contrast you and James wanted for the look of this interview?

joshgallegos87
2 months ago

I thought Roger was brimming with passion in the interview. I actually remember watching "In Time" , I recall after I watched that movie I looked at IMDB and saw it was Roger's work. Its still something of an underrated sci-fi movie. Timberlake was actually really good in the leading role. In a way it reminds me of what is happening now where older people are being taken off ventilators to save younger people, especially in Spain where several doctors have posted videos of themselves crying. I get the insane idea that perhaps COVID-19 is a biological attack perpetrated to minimize the growing population, a radical and stupid conspiracy with no basis of truth, but I just find it odd that it is now killing more Americans than and the spread has minimized in China. Democrats are having a blast watching the economy crumble by the day with over 6 million people out of work.

joshgallegos87
2 months ago
joshgallegos87 2 months ago

Great interview, you and James make such a great team. 

Roger Deakins
2 months ago
Roger Deakins 2 months ago

OK. A reality check. The pandemic is killing more Americans because we were late in recognizing the science. Bad as it may get, this is not an existential crisis. Science is telling us that climate change is. The evidence is irrefutable. And no one is 'having a blast watching the economy crumble'.

joshgallegos87
2 months ago
joshgallegos87 2 months ago

The issue was that people with strong immune systems were asymptomatic and were unknowingly infected with COVID-19, and spreading the virus to the vulnerable population, especially cities where people live in very close proximity to one another like New York. But it spread so rapidly, the outbreak was first recorded in the month of December in Wuhan, China, and I recall there were very few cases in the U.S. just several weeks ago.

President Trump issued travel bans, and that still didn't stop the rapid spread; I don't think it would be too far-fetched to believe that sleeper cells traveled around the country, infecting larger populations in airports and transit stations. Ever since the attempted coup to impeach our great president, I became suspicious of the DNC. And then idiots like Bill Maher said on-air that he hoped for another recession; there were also tweets by Hillary Clinton mocking President Trump, tweeting stuff like "He said, America first..."

I don't agree with everything that President Trump says, especially when it comes to climate change, what people believe to be truth or fiction is irrelevant because as you said, there is an insurmountable amount of evidence that human activity is driving the entire planet to a dangerous tipping point. To fix the issue it would require a global effort, and not to mention trillions of dollars. Which means higher taxes. 

But it's simply a hunch that the US is under a biological attack that has been kept under wraps so as to not cause mass panic and hysteria. I know a very stupid thing to say. But it brings another thought, that nuclear weapons are rather quaint, if there is future warfare it will certainly be biological warfare.

Roger Deakins
2 months ago
Roger Deakins 2 months ago

OK! Let's not go there! Let's just leave it! We disagree, both about the 'conspiracy' and regarding our 'great' President.

Wouter
2 months ago
Wouter 2 months ago

I'm very glad to finally see you talk as a team. You radiate synergy! Beautiful to see. 

I think you're wrong about your view on aesthetics, Roger, of course it's difficult to formulate a nuanced argument representative of your view in the moment as this is a tricky topic to talk about! But, in some sense I think you're right; there definitely is an overwhelming focus on achieving a sort of generic, formulaic and frankly a superficial image of beauty. But in spite of this, I do seem to notice that there is definitely a focus on what the story is trying to say as well. However, what they are trying to say is very much in line with their sensibility towards beauty like I described. I think a lot of films end up being homogeneous, endlessly echoing each other, trying to adhere to some kind of formula for success which is not an accurate representation of reality but rather an illusory model to cope with that volatile, mysterious (and often agonising) quality of life. Nevertheless, the result is a lie, and more often than not very generic and inauthentic at that.

But that is precisely what most people seem to want to consume nowadays. So who are we to judge? It seems that all we can do is take responsibility for the things we ourselves create as well as the things we ourselves consume. 

But to return to the point of aesthetics, I don't think focusing on aesthetics is necessarily bad. Isn't it an important part of the artistic image?

Tarkovsky writes:

"The striving for perfection leads an artist to make spiritual discoveries, to exert the utmost moral effort. Aspiration towards the absolute is is the moving force in the development of mankind. For me the idea of realism in art is linked with that force. Art is realistic when it strives to express an ethical ideal. Realism is a striving for the truth, and truth is always beautiful. Her the aesthetic coincides with the ethical." 

So to conclude, I think it depends on how one's personal understanding of the meaning of aesthetics. One's intention to approach aesthetics as a means to reach succes (false idol) for its own sake is very different from one's intention to approach it as a means to explore life from an honest and truthful perspective. 

Tarkovsky continues:

"I see it as my duty to stimulate reflection on what is essentially human and eternal in each individual soul, and which all too often a person will pass by, even though his fate lies in his hands. He is too busy chasing after phantoms and bowing down to idols. In the end everything can be reduced to the one simple element which is all a person can count upon in his existence: the capacity to love. That element can grow within the soul to become the supreme factor which determines the meaning of a person's life. My function is to make whoever sees my films aware of his need to love and to give his love, and aware that beauty is summoning him." 

dmullenasc
2 months ago

Tarkovsky is a good example of how approaches to realism and "truth" can take many forms. For example, stylized photography like skip-bleach processing and optical printer desaturation -- is that more "realistic" than a less obviously manipulated image? I don't have an answer here but clearly we can justify all sorts of techniques under the umbrella of realism. I remember years ago someone saying they couldn't watch a certain b&w war movie because "b&w was too realistic", as if reality was in b&w! And yet I understood what they were trying to say.

Wouter
2 months ago

Yeah, I saw a few snippets of that documentary that has digitally coloured old war footage. It felt otherworldly! Not sure if that is due to the colouring process itself (maybe not entirely accurate) or if it was simply too realistic for my mind to be handle 🙂

Yes, I agree with you, realism/truth in the Tarkovsky's sense can indeed take many forms!

O Brother is also a great example. This film surely wasn't meant to feel naturalistic, but it is a kind of allegory on life. I'm very much in tune with how the Coens see life. I see it very similarly. Dry, intellectual, a lot of symbolic principles, metaphors and a very dark sense of humour. In some sense this isn't a picture perfect representation of reality in an absolute sense, but to me personally, especially that film, resonates on multiple levels with my own sense of perception. Although the imagery and story feels almost fantastical to the point of almost being absurd, to me, it feels very real.

Canuck
2 months ago
Canuck 2 months ago

It was hilarious how Mr. Deakins shut down Malick references with a simple "No" when asked about "Jesse James" during the Collider interview.

I'm truly mystified by the hold Malick has on critics and cinephiles. The guy made 2 mildly interesting films in the 1970s, a decade that was filled with truly great works, and he's hailed as a visionary. Yeah, his movies look nice but the vapid philosophical ruminations in the voiceovers are downright laughable. His recent works resemble perfume commericals with the impossibly attractive cast just walking and brooding.

I re-watched "The Purple Rose of Cairo" recently and it never fails to impress me how this simple frothy comedy says so much about life's illusions. And that final shot which holds on Mia Farrow's face ... a picture is indeed worth a thousand words.

Wouter
2 months ago
Wouter 2 months ago

I feel your comment, Canuck. I've pondered those thoughts as well. But I came to the conclusion that Malick is one of the few contemporary filmmakers who is experimenting with the format. 

On the other hand, you could say that those later films have developed a bit into a dogma, although I have yet to see his latest film, which by the look of trailer might seem to be a little bit more orthodox in its narration. 

But in any case, I think Malick simply invites us to look beyond the scope and boundaries of a single story. I think what he tries to show us, is life itself. And especially how multiple events, scattered throughout our lives seem to mirror each other. 

There's this Roy Ayers quote from a song:

"My sister, I am your mind. Within you there’s a never-
ending magnitude of infinite strength, wisdom and will.
You travel my roads through life never knowing your own
true reality because my thoughts remain like distant
quasars. You abuse me by never letting me say and do as
I feel. Our thoughts split from love affairs to choice
of friends. We argue like two enemies yet we are good
friends.

Now, there are moments when we harmonize with each
other, and become one with nature and reality. But
these times are few. When after you have replenished
yourself, the fear of the truth sets in. We split, and
you start to run again. Running, running, running.
Running through women, men, jobs, people and life
looking for the answer when I had it all along. But I
smile… because I am your mind."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-qWnWwSGAJE»

I urge you to take a listen; it's a powerful spiritual work. 

To return to Malick I would say that at some point Malick had a spiritual crisis a few decades ago. This might have lead him to question himself and his position and responsibility towards the film industry. I think that at some point he realised that he wanted to make films to express that spiritual sense of perception and clarity when you step out of yourself and witness the entire span of your own life as well as the entirety of life itself. This is clearly demonstrated in the cosmic sequence in A Tree of Life. 

The Tree of Life is also a mystical model for reality. It is based on Kabbalist doctrine. I'm pretty sure it's a direct reference because in one of his later films he used Tarot cards as a narrative tool. All of the Tarot cards are married to the Tree of Life, every card has a very specific location on the tree. 

Especially the film with Christian Bale might be a story that is very close to his own life. Him being in the film industry, it could be that he has been tempted with the Hollywood vices which might have triggered his spiritual crisis. But this is all speculation of course. 

But my point is, that in order to appreciate his films, I think one has to be able to step outside of oneself and be able to witness the larger structure of one's life in order to truly resonate with the Malick films. 

I can't remember how many times I saw Tree of Life. Believe it or not but that film has a powerful effect on me. There is a kind of beauty in it that you simply do not see in most if not all of the rest of contemporary cinema.  

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