My filmmaking influences

As promised my post on what has influenced me as a aspiring filmmaker. There are a lot of films that have probably influenced in that area(I’ve noticed i’ve gotten a fondness for darker films in particular,and most of my film ideas lean towards that spectrum),including ones i don’t like(In that they showed me what i am not interested in doing) but for this post i tried to focus only on my major inspirations.

Let the Right One in/Thomas Alfredson-When i saw this i had already started to become interested in the supernatural genre. But this movie took my interest to a whole new level. Its gritty approach to the vampire genre amazed me, and it was something i hadn’t seen in any American depictions of vampires thus far. Alredson impressed me again in TTSS

The main thing that attracts me to Alfredsons style is that he is doesn’t rely on tricks like shaky cam to create a gritty feel for his films,which i see in far too many films today. Instead he uses tools like lighting and color contrast, which creates a look that is realistic but also beautiful to look at. For my final project in my film class,i brought in a copy of LTROI to ask my teacher how to get that look for my film. Unfortunately issues that came up prevented me from really competing it the way i wanted, but i still look at Alfredsons style as a inspiration

Nowhere Boy-Coming into this,i didn’t have very high expectations for this. Im not a huge beatles or biopic guy, so i wasn’t all that excited for a biopic on John lennon. But i quickly became invested in his character and by the end this became one of my favorite films ever. To me this showed the power of well written characters, in particular when it comes to subject matter one may not be a huge fan of. I truly hope the characters in my film can have that same power.

Stanley Kubrick-The visual consistency to his films is something i would love to achieve. Every one of his films looks amazing, and what makes it even more extraordinary is that he was able to change up various aspects from film to film without losing quality. And even though i wasn’t a fan of all of his films, the ones i did like are definitely a huge influences to me.They manage to retain their cinematic power years and decades later,something i hope i can achieve in my films.

The Dark Knight/X-men/X2-The reason i grouped these 3 together is because they all inspire me for a similar reason. They made a serious approach to the superhero genre work even when most people didn’t think the genre was worthy of that approach(I Know Nolan has gotten most of the credit for that approach,but i would argue that SInger was at the very least inching towards that with his X-men films). This is something i would like to do with the supernatural genre. Also, despite the proliferation of non-mainstream fare in this post, i do appreciate a good blockbuster, and would like to make at lest a few films blockbuster type films in the future.

Ip Man-The way this used fight scenes to show the changing tone of the story(in that the beginning fight scenes are shot in a fun way, but gradually starts to take on a more brutal tone as the film becomes more serious) made this one stick out in my mind,and to me showed how action can be used for effective storytelling.

The Piano Teacher-I adore a film that explores sexuality well(I plan to make a post about this at some point),and this is a prime example of a film that does just that. Even though it is quite graphic in its depiction of sexuality, the film retains a repressed atmosphere(at least until the end, where all that repressed leads to disastrous consequences). A couple of my own film ideas focus on sexuality as a theme, and i hope i am able to portray it with the same effectiveness as this film does.

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9 Responses to My filmmaking influences

  1. ruth says:

    Great post Julian, nice to see who influenced your style. As you know I like TDK and X-Men too. Glad to see you listed Nowhere Boy here, I quite like that one too and was very impressed by Aaron Johnson!

  2. Glad to see IP Man listed here. I agree with you man. (a great list as a whole). IP Man used so much to tell the story and the fighting was phenomally used.

  3. wolfchild says:

    I’m curious how you would separate Tomas Alfredson’s style from that of the DP on both LTROI and TTS, Hoyte van Hoytema (who also shot The Fighter and Call Girl). Granted, no detail of what appears in the frame seems too small for Alfredson’s attention. How much of what you see can be credited to Hoyte, and how much to Tomas?

    • Not knowing all the production details i don’t think i can give a exact answer. I think most likely Tomas already had the idea of shooting in a gritty manner, and Hoyte helped him realize that onscreen. I don’t think they functioned all that different from how directors and there cinematographers normally do.

  4. Pingback: Favorite films involving sexuality | DWC

  5. Novroz says:

    you have interesting choice of movies there. I like the diversity in it. I bet you’ll make great movies one day.

    Now, I need to watch Nowhere Boy. I have for months and still haven’t watched it yet

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