July 29, 2012

Why Can Nobody Shoot an Action Scene Anymore?

I am just back from seeing Battle: Los Angeles and absolutely loved it, however, it has one fatal flaw that so many movies have today, that damn shaky cam.

Is it really so hard to hold the camera steady so we can make out what’s happening on screen? This trend started (I think) with the Bourne movies and Batman Begins.  When an action/fight scene is taking place, the camera is flashing back and forth and it is so difficult to see who is doing what, therefore it is difficult to care who is getting injured as you can’t see it.

I can’t think of any recent action movies where the camera stays still for more than a few seconds, I enjoyed The Mechanic but once again the camera shakes about and ruins what could have been some cool action scenes. The last movie which had well shot action scenes was AVATAR, say what you like about that flick but the action scenes were spot on, Cameron is a genius in the genre.

Two other quibbles I have with modern films, cgi blood and cgi in general. Really? A squib didn’t work before so we now have to animate blood? Come on guys, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. I don’t mind cgi if it is used sparingly but it seems to be everywhere now. There is no substitute for the real thing, use stuntmen, squibs and real explosions. I have yet to see cgi and think “wow that doesn’t look like cgi at all”.

So my message is this, Dear Hollywood, please hire Directors who can create decent action scenes, if you don’t see what’s happening you don’t get engaged, or in my case I get a headache.

About the Author

Eoin Friel
Eoin Friel
I grew up watching JCVD, Sly and Arnold destroy bad guys, blow things up and spew one-liners like it's a fashion statement. Action is everything I go to the movies for and the reason I came up with this site is to share my love for the genre with everyone.



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