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Mobile movie of the week

Drone’s Eye View: Aerial Photography in the 21st Century

In 1858, French photographer Gaspart-Felis Tournachon invented aerial photography. by shooting photos of Paris from a balloon. Unfortunately, those pictures no longer exist. But we do have an aerial image taken two years later by James Wallace Black. He titled his picture “Boston, as the Eagle and the Wild Goose See It.” A hundred and…

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Finding the Decisive Moment in a Movie Scene

Building a scene–or a short video–around a dramatic action is a powerful technique. It works in travelogues, commercials, documentaries, music videos, and all other genres.

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Use an Active Camera to Astonish Viewers

Use an active camera to create visual excitement in any kind of mobile-shot movie.

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Astonishing Actions in a Music Video

In the beginning, movies were about actions such as a train entering a station, an old man drinking a beer, Annie Oakley hitting targets, and a sneeze captured by Thomas Edison in 1894. Since those early days, many other elements have been added to the mix including close-ups, music, dialogue, and visual effects. But French…

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Using Two Kinds of Dialogue in a Mini-doc

“The Sapeh Keeper” beautifully  illustrates the two kinds of dialogue found in most well-made mini-docs.  The filmmaker Mariah Ahmad gives us scenes where her subject Mathew Ngau Jau is shown talking about the Sapeh, a lute played by traditional Malaysian musicians. These “talking-head” clips are then intercut with  scenes in which Jau’s comments are played as…

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Dancing with Dragons: a natural nature movie

In “Dancing with Dragons” filmmaker Erez Sitzer takes the natural approach to nature moviemaking. He allows his star—a dragonfly— to be what it is.

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