Portrait de la jeune fille en feu (2019) dir. Céline Sciamma Frida (2002) dir. Julie Taymor Little Women (2019) dir. Greta Gerwig Emma. (2020) dir. Autumn de Wilde Jane Eyre (2011) dir. Cary Joji Fukunaga The Love Witch (2016) dir. Anna Biller
Cinematography is the omnipresent force around us when we watch a film, whether on the silver, small, or streaming screen. It is the visual foundational blueprint to bridging the gaps between the script, the direction, the acting, and the design of cinema. Without the photography of the film, the cinema is obsolete.
Since the inception of cinema, brought to you by the Lumiere Brothers (the founding fathers of the film) in the 1890s. On February 12, 1892, Léon Bouly invented the first device that was designed to operate as a motion picture camera, film projector, and a film printer. The device Bouly invented and patented was called the cinematographe. Unfortunately, lack of funds and poverty forced Bouly to sell the rights to the cinematograph to the Lumiere Brothers, and the rest is history.
On February 13, 1895, the brothers patented their own version of the cinematographe, expanding on their innovative patent of film perforations (film sprocket holes, first originated by Charles-Émile Reynaud).
Whether it’s the color composition or the visual frames expanded onto the screen, in lamen terms, the cinematography is about the art of making motion pictures. It is the language and sound, unspoken through the lens, and dynamically influenced through the screen.
The cinematographer is the ballerina, moving the camera with their bodies, placing the visual design within their shoulders.
In 2019, we had an array of beautiful masterful cinematography that elevated such great films. With gorgeous color and sensory piqued to perfection, here are our Top 10 for 2019.
LITTLE WOMEN (2019); directed by Greta Gerwig; photographed by
Yorick Le Saux
PORTRAIT OF LADY ON FIRE (2019); directed by Céline Sciamma;
HUSTLERS (2019); directed by Lorene Scafaria;
by Todd Banhazl
THE LIGHTHOUSE (2019); directed by Robert Eggers;
MIDSOMMAR (2019); directed by Ari Aster;
by Pawel Pogorzelski
JOKER (2019); directed by Todd Philips;
by Lawrence Sher
PARASITE (2019); directed by Bong Joon-ho;
QUEEN AND SLIM (2019); directed by Melina Matsoukas;
by Tad Radcliffe
THE BEACH BUM (2019); directed by Harmony Korine; photographed by
AD ASTRA (2019); directed by James Gray; photographed by
Hoyte Van Hoytema