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So as you know, I stopped writing lengthy reviews on this site this year, keeping the blog as more of a film diary of sorts.  Lo and behold,...

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The 2011 RyMickey Awards - Best Cinematography

When we discuss cinematography, we're taking a look at both lighting design and frame composition.  Some nice films this year, but 2009 is still my favorite year of the past three I've been doing this (links to past years are at the bottom of this post).

Best Cinematography of 2011

Honorable Mentions

#8 - Jane Eyre -- Adriano Goldman
#7 - Hugo -- Robert Richardson
#6 - Drive -- Newton Thomas Sigel

And the Top Five...

#5 - The Artist - Guillaume Schiffman
Black and white wins me over every time.  With lovely simple shots like the one above, the "old school" cinematography of this Best Picture-winning film made you feel as if you were watching something created in the 1930s.

#4 - War Horse - Janusz Kaminski
I wasn't a fan of the film in the slightest, but it was a beautiful thing to look at.  Shots oftentimes looked like exquisite paintings.  Admittedly, these shots don't necessarily bring anything new to the table -- I pointed that out and criticized them in my initial review -- but there's no denying that they're powerful throwbacks/homages to cinema's past.

#3 - Melancholia - Manuel Alberto Claro
Director Lars von Trier excels again at choosing cinematographers after the gorgeously lensed Antichrist in 2009.  Here, the foreboding atmosphere is always omnipresent.

#2 - Rango - No Cinematographer Credited 
[Roger Deakins - "Visual Consultant"]
This nearly made the #1 spot.  Animated films as of late are really amping up the visuals and this year's Rango is no exception.  Well-known cinematographer Roger Deakins made this one a beauty to watch.

#1 - The Tree of Life - Emmanuel Lubezki
This was the go-to film for many cinephiles in 2011 when it came to cinematography.  Although Hugo managed to win the Oscar, to me The Tree of Life was almost solely about the visuals which oftentimes overpowered the story.  The above shot is fairly "well known," but gives a good overall idea of the way shadows, light, and landscape come together to form something that is incredibly visually appealing.

Previous Best Cinematography Awards


  1. Don't know how I feel about a purely animated movie being "cinematography".

  2. Sometimes I've got to create a little ruckus with my nominations...heck, two years ago I gave "motion capture performances" my top spot on "Breakthrough Performer" of the year.

    Still, I wasn't all that impressed with much this year. I was scrambling for a top five, to be honest.

    That being said, it was obvious that in Rango they paid careful attention to lighting and background design and framing. Some nice work there (even if it wasn't done by a "cinematographer").