0 Love It

The five best long takes in movies

These shots certainly have stamina.

Halloween

This week's The Turin Horse comes from Hungary's Bla Tarr, master of the uninterrupted take. (Here's a near-ten-minute example of Tarr's gift for going long, pulled from 2000's Werckmeister Harmonies.) In the history of movies, a handful of long takes emerge as the best—pardon us if we don't include the feature-length Russian Ark or Alfred Hitchcock's seamless Rope.

Touch of Evil (1948)

Orson Welles's technical genius—much celebrated on Citizen Kane—was never in finer flourish than on this B picture, opening with a breathtaking Mexican-American border cross that knocked out viewers. (The shot even got parodied in The Player.)

 Watch now on iTunes    Watch now at Amazon Instant Video


I Am Cuba (1964)

You're not going to find a more dizzying evocation of Havana high life than this film's swirling rooftop sequence, complete with sunbathers, waiters lofting daiquiris and—at the climax—a delicious plunge into a pool (cribbed for Boogie Nights).

 Buy on Amazon


The Passenger (1975)

Never mind if you haven't seen Michelangelo Antonioni's ennui-laced drama, starring Jack Nicholson as a wayward journalist. The seven-and-a-half minute tracking shot is beyond exquisite, the camera unbound by gates or walls.

 Buy on Amazon


Halloween (1978)

A massively influential piece of horror grammar, John Carpenter's intro to his slasher classic puts us in the head of Michael Myers, who climbs a staircase, dons a mask, stabs a victim and then flees the scene of his crime. (The shot starts at 2:20.)

 Watch now on iTunes    Watch now at Amazon Instant Video


Goodfellas (1990)

Martin Scorsese's legendary bit of choreography captures the magic of a date at the Copacabana—but also the unusual access afforded to rising gangster Henry Hill. (This clip, the only one we can embed, is in Italian; somehow, that adds to it.)

 Watch now on iTunes    Watch now at Amazon Instant Video


Comments

0 comments