Wednesday, April 6, 2011
The early predecessor to modern films were similar to what we call stop motion today, stills fixed to a round drum and hand cranked to create an animated picture. It makes sense then that hundreds of films have been made paying homage to photographers and photography. This is by no means a comprehensive list and it is mostly based on opinion, so I'm sure people will have films they feel should be listed. So by all means add any films you think should be added in the comments.
- Blowup (1966) A mod London photographer believes that he has photographed a murder.
- The Public Eye (1992) Story of a 1940s photographer who specializes in crime and in not getting involved... until this time. (Based on Weegee)
- The Year of Living Dangerously (1982) A young Australian reporter tries to navigate the political turmoil of Indonesia during the rule of President Sukarno with the help of a diminutive photographer.
- Somebody Has To Shoot The Picture (1990) Raymond Eames, a small-time drug dealer, has been sentenced to death for the shooting death of a policeman. After seven years of appeals are exhausted, the date of his execution arrives. His last request is that his execution be photographed. Eames selects Paul Marish, a jaded Pulitzer Prize winning photographer, who is convinced by his agent to visit the small town in Georgia. Sensing a big story, Marish's agent sends in a reporter from Time magazine, and together they begin to investigate the events surrounding the murder, in a small town where emotions are high and opinions are fixed.
- Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus (2006) Turning her back on her wealthy, established family, Diane Arbus falls in love with Lionel Sweeney, an enigmatic mentor who introduces Arbus to the marginalized people who help her become one of the most revered photographers of the twentieth century.
- Rear Window (1954) A wheelchair bound photographer spies on his neighbors from his apartment window and becomes convinced one of them has committed murder.
- Funny Face (1957) Fashion photographer Dick Avery, in search for an intellectual backdrop for an air-headed model, expropriates a Greenwich Village bookstore. When the photo session is over the store is left in a shambles, much to salesgirl Jo Stockton's dismay. Avery stays behind to help her clean up. Later, he examines the photos taken there and sees Jo in the background of one shot. He is intrigued by her unique appearance, as is Maggie Prescott, the editor of a leading fashion magazine. They offer Jo a modeling contract, which she reluctantly accepts only because it includes a trip to Paris. Eventually, her snobbish attitude toward the job softens, and Jo begins to enjoy the work and the company of her handsome
- Proof (1991) A blind photographer takes pictures as “proof” that the world he photographs is as it’s described to him by other people. Stars a young Russell Crowe.
- High Art (1998) Heroin addicted once famous art photographer Lucy (Ally Sheedy in her best role) strikes up a friendship with a magazine editor who tries to convince her to get back into the art scene. Patricia Clarkson is brilliant in the role of her former girlfriend who also struggles with addiction.
- Gentlemen’s Relish (2001) Billy Connolly stars in a rambunctious period comedy detailing the celluloid exploits of a 20th Century London photographer who specializes in deliciously scandalous snapshots. Kingdom Swan (Connolly) is an artist whose career seems to be on the downturn until he receives a camera as a gift. Subsequently establishing himself as a photographer who specializes in capturing the unclad human form in lavish classical settings, Swan quickly becomes the scornful figure of notoriety to a the painfully prudish upper crust.
- Double Exposure: The Story of Margaret Bourke-White (1989) Farrah Fawcett stars as the famed photojournalist, whose work for Life magazine from 1936 onward gained her worldwide celebrity. Focuses on Burke-White's stormy relationship with her husband, novelist Erskine Caldwell.
- The Killing Fields (1984) A photographer is trapped in Cambodia during tyrant Pol Pot's bloody "Year Zero" cleansing campaign, which claimed the lives of two million "undesirable" civilians.
- Salvador (1986) A journalist, down on his luck in the US, drives to El Salvador to chronicle the events of the 1980 military dictatorship, including the assassination of Archbishop Oscar Romero. He forms an uneasy alliance with both guerillas in the countryside who want him to get pictures out to the US press, and the right-wing military, who want him to bring them photographs of the rebels. Meanwhile he has to find a way of protecting his Salvadorean girlfriend and getting her out of the country.
- The Photographer (1974) A murder story with a comedic twist. A famous photographer uses his models for more than taking pictures. He needs them as victims to satisfy his blood-lust. Each murder becomes more bizarre than the next.
- Shutter (2004) A photographer and his new wife discover disturbing, ghostly images in photographs they develop after a tragic accident. Fearing the manifestations may be connected, they investigate and learn that some mysteries are better left unsolved.
Also watch for the new movie "The Bang Bang Club" A drama based on the true-life experiences of four combat photographers capturing the final days of apartheid in South Africa.