Sunday, May 1, 2011

A little Critique on the work of Marcus Nispel

I’ve been watching films directed by Marcus Nispel to try and get a feel for what CONAN 3D might be like. I was watching the Dean Koontz's FRANKENSTEIN film starring Michael Madsen and Vincent Perez. ( He directed it ) Marcus is a fan of the medium shot and likes to have the subject approach the camera and do a pass as the camera turns when the subject gets closer. So we can expect a lot of that. Another Nispel habit is the segue…he melds scenes together in montage format and transitions to the following scene's establishing shot to create mood. He does this particularly using the medium shot and a lot of wind or rain to set the feel of the mood.

Another big time Directing favorite of Marcus’ is the extreme close up just before a flashback sequence. On a face or on eyes and then he does the fade in with the flashback…usually a medium shot heavily clouded or shadowed almost noir like with muffled voices echoing throughout the flashback.

When it comes to blood and gore he does not scrimp. After watching TEXAS CHAINSAW ( He directed it. ) I took note that he uses that medium shot he favors so much to stage the scene so you can see everything. Whereas somebody like George Romero or Tobe Hooper would have a close up on the wounding or maiming of the victim. Which in the case of CONAN would probably be a good thing what with all the swordplay in the movie and all.

One thing that concerns me the most is the actual sword fights themselves. I do not like in close tight shots. I want to see every Swing , swoop , dodge , block and parrie.

Excellent fight scenes of note from the last several years I’d say were in KING ARTHUR , Lord of the Rings , Braveheart , 300 , Gladiator and Pathfinder BUT…the fight scenes in the 13th Warrior were Too close for my tastes. The best shot in the entire film was when Bulwyf swings his sword like a bat and knocked the leader of the bad guys off his horse. The trial of the 3 shields scene was pretty cool too. Not to say I did not enjoy the film because I did…but that close up , way too close to the camera action takes away from the action itself and robs us the viewers of some well deserved sword play action!

In many ways Marcus’ Directing skills remind me of Russell Mulchahy’s work on HIGHLANDER which is a good thing. So I have faith in Marcus’ talents. I feel my research was worth the effort. I am highly optimistic. Now lets see that damned film!

Marcus Nispel...


Dean Koontz - FRANKENSTEIN...


Bulwyf ( Pronounced BULL VIFE ) from the 13th Warrior...


Mel...


Karl Urban - PATHFINDER...

Viggo - As Aragorn from the RINGS trilogy...

2 comments:

Xonan said...

As for me, I don not think this will be remotely as epic as Braveheart, all considerations of being faithful put aside.

In Braveheart the fights were real, the war was there in front of your eyes, , it clashed , spurted and hacked like hell without any kungfu.
Which is not the case in this trailer at all.
We'll see soon enough I guess if the movie is really as the trailer describes it, which is for the moment some kind of Clash of Titans remake and Scorpion King as it is so often said.

Mikeyboy said...

very few films will ever match Braveheart as an EPIC or on any other scale.