WHY…?

            The Rising of the Moon is a 1957 anthology film directed by John Ford and photographed by Robert Krasker, ASC, BSC.  I saw it awhile back and it didn’t resonate with me, but what did make an impression were the Dutch angles within which so many of the images were framed.  With no data to back this up, I’d bet the farm that Ford used more of them here than any twenty directors have used over an entire career.  While the off-kilter perspectives don’t necessarily detract from the proceedings, they certainly don’t add any value at all.

            One question kept popping up in my mind: What were Ford and Krasker thinking?  “Let’s do something different – just for the hell of it?”  I’d give them both a lot more credit than that.  At this point the answer is no doubt lost to posterity.

            On the other hand, they were shooting on location in Ireland, so maybe a bit of the single malt had something to do with it.  I’d actually prefer to believe that.  It plays into the romantic notions of what the old days of filmmaking were like.  You know, smoking, drinking, lots of red meat and carousing to all hours.  Despite the threat of premature death, the prospects for fun and excitement were equally guaranteed.

            You’d have to be deluded to think there’s something of an equivalent in today’s movie industry.  I mean, seriously…  How could electrolyte-infused water possibly compare to a nice scotch highball?

            It can’t.  Just use it to make the ice cubes and maybe you’ll start to see things the same way Ford and Krasker did.

3.29.2022

One thought on “WHY…?”

  1. Krasker although from Australia, was heavily influenced by German
    Expressionism a creative movement after WW1 which influenced architecture, painting, sculpture, and cinema. Hitchcock who studied
    early on in Germany was also influenced by this movement.
    Certainly a time of experimentation, they explored unusual lighting
    techniques, tension and moodiness, along with trick camera angles
    as seen in The Rising of the Moon. After a few rounds of malts and
    steaks in the local pub, maybe Krasker convinced Ford that this is
    how the film should be made. Obviously it wouldn’t have been the
    other way around.

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