Most popular posts of 2010

4 01 2011

 

… And if you’re still game for pointless lists, here are the 5 posts that proved most popular on this ‘blog with you, the readers, in 2010:

'Paranormal Activity'

1

Location, Location, One Location December 2009
2 comments

Luis Buñuel

Buñuel on set

2

The Luis Buñuel Film School February 2010
1 comment

Christoph Waltz in 'Inglourious Basterds'

3

Mind Your Language September 2009
2 comments

Mad Men

Draper thinks about smoking a fag

4

At The Movies with Don Draper March 2010
1 Like on WordPress.com,

Bad Santa? Michael Haneke

5

Happy Haneke November 2009
3 comments





Location, Location, One Location

3 12 2009

 

'Paranormal Activity'

If you’re out shopping for, say, a small car or an acre of land, then $15 000 is a reasonable amount of money to have in your back pocket. If, on the other hand, you’re planning to make a feature film, $15 000 is very little indeed.

Yet that’s the amount of money that American director Oren Peli reportedly spent on his debut film Paranormal Activity, a chilling tale of suburban demonic possession that has, in recent months, taken over $107 million at the US box office.

Peli was partly able to keep production costs so low by shooting the film almost entirely within the confines of his own home in San Diego. With a principal cast of two, Peli presents his movie as ‘found footage’ shot by a young couple trying to get to the bottom of spooky goings-on in their house at night. This device largely works, with the director using the confined spaces of his home and some unnerving night-vision footage of the couple sleeping to create a tense, claustrophobic atmosphere that’s ripe for all kinds of shocks.

But if shooting an entire film in one location is easy on the pocket of the cash-strapped film-maker, it throws up some unique challenges too. How do you hold the audience’s attention for 90 minutes or more without a change of scenery? How do you make your film cinematic as opposed to theatrical? And how do you move the camera around in what could be a pretty restricted space?

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