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Visions of Light 1992
Description: Cameramen and girls discuss the craft and art of cinematography and of the "DP" (the director of photography), illustrating their points with clips from 100 films, from Birth of a Nation to Do the Right Thing. Themes: the DP says folks where to look; changes in films (the comeback of sound, color, and wide screens) needed constructive responses from DPs; and, these artisans constantly invent fresh equipment and test fresh things, with unbelievable results. The narration takes us through the identifiable studio styles of the 30s, the emergence of noir, the Fresh York look, and the impact of Europeans. Citizen Kane, The Conformist, and Gordon Willis receive unique attention.
Released: 24 Feb 1993 Director: Arnold Glassman, Todd McCarthy, Stuart Samuels Writers: Todd McCarthy Actors: Ernest R. Dickerson, Michael Chapman, Allen Daviau, Caleb Deschanel Genres: Documentary, History
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Visions of Light Reviews:

Folks who surf this particular website, generally-speaking, could love this documentary as it deals with the movies, and how they are photographed and how the cameramen and we, the viewer, see them. That may sound a bit dry, but this documentary is anything but that. They never stay more than a several mins on any topic, personality or movie.I appreciated this DVD more and more as I became more familiar with films. The more of a fanatic you are of both films and cinematography, the higher you will rate this documentary. From silent films to modern-day, the producers on this did a fine job showing examples of movies from each decade up to 1990. (It would be fun to see an modernized edition of this to contain movies from the past 15 years.)This video gave me a fresh appreciation for black-and-white films. Some of the photography was superb and many cinematographers think that is the medium in which they should really present off their talents.Regarding color, this documentary is where I first heard about the fabulously- filmed movie, "Days Of Heaven" (1978), which has become one of my all-time favorites. In all, there are about 125 movies mentioned, so you may explore some gems you weren't aware of, as I did.Whether you know most of these movies or just a few, you could search a number of things in here interesting.


This is a great, I repeat great, documentary on the history of cinematography. No movie student could be without it!! It covers all the changes in technology and techniques and its impact on film.It brilliantly shows the freedom of camera movement during the silent period and how things became more restricted when sound was added soon and the transition from B/W to Color. But most importantly, clearly depicts how Directors of Photography over came these limitations and created fresh techniques which changed movie history forever. Brilliant!!!! You'll never look at a movie the same method after seeing this.Covers many various aspects of "the Hollywood look" and the various "Studio looks" throughout time. Also uncovers the secrets of many DP's and how they made their "Stars" look so incredible!!I especially like the section on Movie Noir and the plethora of absolutely breath taking movie clips!!! Included in this gem of a documentary are nice clips from classics like the 1947 ver of "Oliver Twist" and examples from some of the best DP's of all time!!! Arthur Miller...etc...Very entertaining!! Even for non-film buffs!!! I've showed this documentary to mates and relatives and they all seem to watch with amazement!!!I liked it so much I just had to purchase it!


The magical glow Marlene Dietrich gave off in her vintage exotic films, the almost news-coverage like grit of DOG DAY AFTERNOON, the realistic look of JAWS- all the secrets of how to create a movie look it's greatest possible are here in this perfect American Movie Institute produced documentary. VISIONS OF LIGHT traces the history of cinematography in simple, everyman terms (No, we don't have cameramen using jargon like "f stops, ground glass, neutral density.") The movie clips from such beautifully lensed movies as SUNRISE, GRAPES OF WRATH, REBECCA, T-MEN, PICNIC, IN COLD BLOOD, TAXI DRIVER and BLADERUNNER) perfectly highlight the film. A real gotta see.



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