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A JOYFUL LOOK AT A CAMERMAN FOR THE AGES
on October 5, 2012
I first saw this intimate and informative documentary on TCM, and was so impressed that I immediately went online, found it on Amazon, and ordered a copy. Jack Cardiff's body of work is impressive, but it's his self deprecating personality, seemingly uneffected by his successful porfolio, that caught my eye. In the infancy of color cinimetography, the Technicolor people were looking for cimematographers in England to train to use their unique three strand system. Grilled by the Technicolor staff with highly technical questions, Cardiff simply said, "Well, I'm not really a very technical person. I just look at beautiful paintings and copy the lighting." They selected him, to his surprise, and the rest is history. Cardiff's early camera work for brilliant British director Michael Powell yielded: A Matter of Life and Death (Stairway To Heaven), Black Narcissus, and The Red Shoes. Cardiff's delightful interview is evenly spaced throughout the film, along with Marty Scorsese, Lauren Becall, Kim Hunter, Thelma Schoonmaker, Alan Parker and many others. Scorsese's revelation that he styled the fight scenes in Raging Bull after The Red Shoes' ballet sequences is worth the price of this DVD alone. So is the behind-the-scenes look at the making of Black Narcissus. Cardiff's prolific crareer spanned seventy years. CAMERAMAN, is a delightful and informative look at the life and career of one of cinematography's giants.