David Fincher : What Don’t You Do And Then What Do You Do?

What Does David Fincher Not Do?

David Fincher is one of my favorite director and I love his House Of Cards series. Even Barak Obama loves it and watched every episodes of all three seasons.On April Fools day President Obama even impersonates Frank Underwood from Fincher’s House of Cards.

Back to the topic now. In my previous post I discussed about  Fincher’s Striking Dark Lighting Visual Style. Today we take one step ahead and try to understand his visual style. Once again Tony Zhou has come up with an impressive video essay about the Fincher’s visual style which you must watch.

That is fantastic, isn’t it? Tony Zhou takes lots of efforts to make these video essays. The directors, the more they direct, the more they can express themselves the smallest details of a scene. Lot of people think the directors are distinguished by how they shoot the crazy oners, the stylish stuff and yes these are the shots they get copied, which gives you a strong indication of someones vision. But sooner or later every filmmaker goes back to shots where two people in a room talking, the least cinematic thing is. But Fincher cares about information. In his world drama happens when a character learns a new piece of information, how does it fit with they already know and how they react to learning little bit more the truth. Fincher’s style is a extension of this idea.

Fincher describes it

They know you can do anything, the question is what don’t you do; now what do you do.

So what does Fincher not do?

  •  Handheld : Fincher likes a tripod. He doesn’t like handled shots much and does maybe one shot per film.
  • Sense Of Human Being Operating A Camera : He doesn’t like deliberate camera shakes.

I just love this idea of this ominous the camera, it just goes over here perfectly and angles there.. and it does not have any personality, but its very much like, whats happening was doomed to happen.

  • He Doesn’t Cuts To Closeup Unless He Needs To : Fincher describes

Every time you go to a close up, the audience now look at this, this is important. You have to be very very cautious and careful, when you choose to do it.

  • He never moves the camera if he can help it.: He describes

I want to present wide frame in as a loaded situation as possible

As Fincher has got older, he actually got more scuttled. He is really good at using emptiness in the frame. He is a stubborn director and sometimes it takes 100 takes to make him say him “OK SHOT” but its actually great to watch someone who is good in his work. Its absolutely worth studying.

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