Posted by: Joe Eds | June 30, 2010

Best Shot films of the Decade?

A friend of ours (Hey Whit!) forwarded this recent poll released by the magazine The American Cinematographer done by its readers, members of the ASC (American Society of Cinematographers) and the general public.  The poll is the Top Ten Best Shot Films of the last decade (1998 – 2008).  Here are the top ten (the members had to pick between 50 films which are also listed).

Amélie: Bruno Delbonnel, ASC, AFC
Children of Men: Emmanuel Lubezki, ASC, AMC
Saving Private Ryan: Janusz Kaminski
There Will Be Blood: Robert Elswit, ASC
No Country for Old Men: Roger Deakins, ASC, BSC
Fight Club: Jeff Cronenweth, ASC
The Dark Knight: Wally Pfister, ASC
Road to Perdition: Conrad L. Hall, ASC
Cidade de Deus (City of God): César Charlone, ABC
American Beauty: Conrad L. Hall, ASC

First off, I’ve always found these kinds of list rather silly in terms of actual meaning. They do, however, provide a great means of discussion. What is so staggering about this list is it completely mirrors the one in my head had I been asked this question, though Children of Men would be #1 and Road to Perdition #2. This is a very self-aware list. They throw one film out to all the current titans of cinematography (Deakins, Elswit, Kaminski). Several Best Picture winners, nominees and cult hits. The only name listed twice is the legendary Conrad Hall who won his first award for shooting Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

There are two glaring omissions: Le scaphandre et le Papillon (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) by Janusz Kaminski and O Brother, Where Art Thou? by Roger Deakins.

Here are some clips/trailers of some of these great movies:


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