Goldie Hawn & Steven Spielberg

Goldie Hawn & Steven Spielberg

I laugh because this was one of the many Spielberg stories that went around the CSULB film department.  I transferred in the semester after Spielberg graduated, and would pass the wall of photos I named the “wall of worship” from Spielberg’s graduation as frequently as I could.
When Steven Spielberg graduates from your school, you make a big deal about it.

I laugh because this was one of the many Spielberg stories that went around the CSULB film department.  I transferred in the semester after Spielberg graduated, and would pass the wall of photos I named the “wall of worship” from Spielberg’s graduation as frequently as I could.

When Steven Spielberg graduates from your school, you make a big deal about it.

A Long List of My Favorite Movies
↳ Jaws (1975)
"Martin, it’s all psychological. You yell barracuda, everybody says, ‘Huh? What?’ You yell shark, we’ve got a panic on our hands on the Fourth of July."

(via phenomenaaa)

moviesincolor:

Steven Spielberg WeekRaiders of the Lost Ark, 1981Cinematography: Douglas Slocombe

moviesincolor:

Steven Spielberg Week
Raiders of the Lost Ark, 1981
Cinematography: Douglas Slocombe

moviesincolor:

Steven Spielberg WeekJaws, 1975Cinematography: Bill Butler

moviesincolor:

Steven Spielberg Week
Jaws, 1975
Cinematography: Bill Butler

dadsamoviecritic:

Filming image from the set of ‘Jaws’ (1975)

dadsamoviecritic:

Filming image from the set of ‘Jaws’ (1975)

theacademy:

Thank you, Jeffrey Katzenberg and Steven Spielberg!The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences received separate $10 million gifts yesterday from Jeffrey Katzenberg and Steven Spielberg for the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. In recognition of these gifts, the two main galleries on the lobby floor of the Academy Museum will be named for Katzenberg and Spielberg – The Marilyn and Jeffrey Katzenberg Gallery and The Spielberg Family Gallery.

I am so excited for this museum to open.

theacademy:

Thank you, Jeffrey Katzenberg and Steven Spielberg!

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences received separate $10 million gifts yesterday from Jeffrey Katzenberg and Steven Spielberg for the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. In recognition of these gifts, the two main galleries on the lobby floor of the Academy Museum will be named for Katzenberg and Spielberg – The Marilyn and Jeffrey Katzenberg Gallery and The Spielberg Family Gallery.

I am so excited for this museum to open.

Movies you Should See #18: Jurassic Park • director Steven Spielberg

I didn’t mean to include two Spielberg movies, one after another, but I’m including Jurassic Park in the list this time around not just because it’s one of my favorite films, but because I think it deserves another look.

To be quite honest, movies like this, Spielberg like this, is the kind of Spielberg film I miss.  I adore Spielberg’s epics like Lincoln, Schindler’s List and even Saving Private Ryan, but I truly think his absolute love for films ours out in films like Jurassic Park - and that’s part of what makes it so amazing to watch.  This is the kind of movie that beckons you to come to the shore of it’s river because it promises something interesting, and before you know it, you’ve been swept up in it’s current, racing to get to where it pours into the bay - and you’re delighted the entire ride.  It’s fun.  It’s exhilarating, and it’s absolutely refreshing.  It’s an adventure that you never have to leave your seat for.  Many directors have attempted to make intelligent adventures, but Spielberg is one of the only directors that can take a film like Jurassic Park, keep it intelligent inject it with fun, give you great performances, and show you something you have never seen before.

Part of the reason Jurassic Park is so beautiful and unique is a wonderful collaboration between two artists at the top of their fields - Mr. Spielberg, and Mr. Stan Winston.  Jurassic Park did use some CGI, it had to - no one was going to be able to make a life sized T-Rex that could run at actual speed and continue to look real and be menacing.  However, whenever practical and possible, the dinosaurs were real.  That’s where Stan Winston came in.

Mr. Winston was the man that made dreams a reality in one of the most amazing ways possible.  He made some of the best practical effects in the industry.  In Jurassic Park he made a T-Rex blink, and dilate his pupil, a triceratops breathed with a rising and falling chest to an actor could lean against it, and a dilaphasaurus screamed at a cowardly computer programmer.  These things and more all happened in front of actors - tennis balls on sticks and x’s on walls were kept to only the necessary scenes, and knowing that these animals, even if just machines, existed in the world helps to increase the magic.  At least it does for people like me.

Perhaps it’s also worth nothing that this is film helps truly show the diversity of the films in Mr. Spielberg’s filmography.  Jurassic Park is easily one of the best films Spielberg has ever made…and it came out in the same year as Schindler’s List.

Movies You Should See #17: Jaws • director Steven Spielberg

Everyone knows the premise of Jaws, so I won’t bore you with a rundown of the plot here.  However, even though this film is the literal mother of all summer blockbusters, a widely known film, I felt that I needed to include it here.  Part of the reason that I’ve included some of the films I have in this list isn’t because I don’t think people have seen them, but because I think people have gotten so used to having these films around that they no longer see them for the brilliant pieces of cinema that they are.  Jaws definitely falls into that category.

This piece is probably intended mainly for the people in my generation and younger.  They now look at Jaws and more often that not, when I bring it up, they seem to dismiss this film and only mention how fake the shark is.  My response is so what?  

No, the shark wasn’t real.  It was a robotic model, and only in a few shots was footage of actual sharks used.  However, this shark is just as real as any CGI that can now be created by computers and designers - more real perhaps because actors could actually interact and respond to it instead of working in front of a green screen or screaming at a tennis ball.  This prop, effect, was real.  It may not have always worked, it may not have always looked as real as a living, breathing shark - but it was and is terrifying.  And the real point is that this movie isn’t about seeing the shark.

Yes, yes, I know.  You’ve been told a million times that the brilliance of Jaws isn’t about what you see, it’s about what you don’t see.  But really truly think about that for a moment.  This movie is crafted so well that you’re more scared when you can’t see the shark than when you can.  Do you have any idea how hard that is to accomplish?  Jaws is proof that Spielberg knows what he’s doing.  It’s not a myth that the way Jaws ended up isn’t the way it was supposed to be.  Spielberg set out to make a much more traditional monster movie, blood, guts and lots of shark.  Yet, as it always goes, necessity is the mother of creativity and when the shark proved to be far less reliable than they thought, Spielberg moved on to plan b.  And he hit it out of the park.

Removing the shark from most of the movie made everything Brody and the characters couldn’t see a threat.  The very nature of the island, the water surrounding it, became a menace.  Amity Island became a trap that no one could avoid and the characters have to go where only one character, the shark, has the advantage.  Once on the water Spielberg does the truly terrifying thing and begins to strip everything away from our human characters, leaving no barriers between man and shark.

The shark, or lack thereof is not the only brilliant thing in this film though.  The performances are truly incredible.  Richard Dreyfuss, Robert Shaw & Roy Scheider are equally incredible.  There is one scene in particular, a scene that has been analyzed and studied by directors everywhere, that is truly brilliant and shows these three off.  Of course what I am talking about is the scene in the belly of the Orca, when Brody, Hooper and Quint tell war stories only to be drawn in to Quint’s truly horrifying tale of his service in WWII.  It is mesmerizing how slow and subtle the shift can change from a drunk party, to somber and serious.

This movie was the first summer blockbuster.  It really was.  Yet it differs from most modern blockbusters in one obvious way: this film concentrates on the story more than it concentrates on the effects.  I’m not saying that effects are bad, but there are a sad number of tent pole films now that rely more on explosions, 3D and crazy visuals than the characters we should be caring about.  It’s a tragedy, and going back to the original summer blockbuster can show you how important it is to concentrate as much on the writing and characters as on the visuals and spectacle. 

Harrison Ford & Steven Spielberg

Harrison Ford & Steven Spielberg