Days of Heaven (1979, Terrence Malick; Cinematographers: Nestor Almendros, Haskell Wexler)
The common myth that Terrence Malick’s Days of Heaven was shot entirely with source lighting is debunked in the blu ray supplementary booklet by primary cinematographer Nestor Almendros, but this scene, which he mentions specifically, seems to use only the fire light the farm hands dance around.  The film comes out a little grainy and underexposed looking, but the moment is true, an approximation of real life, and real joy, a breaking away from the long, rough day.  It’s also an important scene in terms of foreshadowing, as the sparks twirling around in the night breeze, illuminating faces reflects the film’s second, chaotic fire, impossible to control as it spreads and spreads.  

Days of Heaven (1979, Terrence Malick; Cinematographers: Nestor Almendros, Haskell Wexler)

The common myth that Terrence Malick’s Days of Heaven was shot entirely with source lighting is debunked in the blu ray supplementary booklet by primary cinematographer Nestor Almendros, but this scene, which he mentions specifically, seems to use only the fire light the farm hands dance around.  The film comes out a little grainy and underexposed looking, but the moment is true, an approximation of real life, and real joy, a breaking away from the long, rough day.  It’s also an important scene in terms of foreshadowing, as the sparks twirling around in the night breeze, illuminating faces reflects the film’s second, chaotic fire, impossible to control as it spreads and spreads.  

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  1. theillstills posted this