I loved Cary Fukunaga’s recent take on the classic JANE EYRE. (He’s pictured above with his Director of Photography Adriano Goldman.) And in addition to the deft direction, Moira Buffini’s adaptation is searingly concise and dramatic – it never feels like a stuffed-to-the-gills adaptation. But what I really want to talk about here is the cinematography, which is revelatory. The last two ‘classic’ films I’ve seen, this and Jane Campion’s BRIGHT STAR (not classic literature but based on Andrew Motion’s biography of John Keats) have both blown me away in terms of visual approach. (See my post from fall ’10 on BRIGHT STAR here.) Both eschew traditional coverage and framing in service of something more dynamic – a fluid, organic camera approach that plays mightily with depth of field, creative frames, and in short, ways of seeing. (Or, the DP and crew are not just there to document or illuminate the actors. The camera absolutely dances with performance – enhancing, contrasting, participating, rejecting — story.) The effect? Something that feels more modern, more present, more emotionally important – it’s not homework, it’s art.
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