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Cinematography in La Haine
Transcript of Cinematography in La Haine
The film was shot in colour, but then printed for projection as black and white because Kassovitch decided that this fitted the story better. It suggests the downbeat nature of the estates, but also frames Paris in an unfamiliar guise.
In La Haine cinematography is used as a form of narrative device. An attempt was made to film all the scenes on the estate with a short, ‘wide’ lens and the scenes in Paris with a longer lens. This has the effect of emphasising the closeness to the environment of the people on the estate and the relative distance from the environment – people stand out from the background – in the Paris scenes.
Some of the scenes use a relatively static camera, but the most striking visual feature of La Haine is the tracking camera, which follows the youths as they move through the estate. A moving camera is usually found in conjunction with long takes. Action is organised so that the camera can follow what happens in a continuous take without the need to ‘cover’ the shot from another angle. These require very careful preparation.
There are a number of noticeable effects in the opening half of the film. The atmosphere of the estate is built up by layers of ‘ambient’ of ‘direct’ sound – car traffic, train horns, dogs barking, people shouting, motorbikes etc. The sound echoes around the open spaces and the hard walls of the apartment blocks. The voices echo across the open space, emphasising the lack of privacy and the disruption to everyone’s ‘quiet lives’.
Paris is presented without any special sense of sound – there is simply noise in the background and some snatches of music. This is alien territory where the youths are lost.
Meaning of Cinematography -
Cinematography is the art or science of motion picture photography. It is the technique of film photography, including both the shooting and development of the film.
Cinematography in La Haine