When the new technique called bullet time debuted 20 years ago with the movie "The Matrix," the effect was so different and mind-blowing that it raised the bar for outside the box camera effects. A couple practice runs, a group of boys playing basketball, and a clever cameraman was all it took to pull off this big budget effect without even opening a wallet.
Now granted, this neat trick wouldn't work without complete control over movement in the scene. That means no jumping, moving cars, running water, animals, etc. This doesn't change the fact that a one-take with some basic direction and placement of the actors resulted in a very convincing effect that I'd imagine the creator will keep experimenting with.
The real magic of the original effect was capturing real-time footage from a number of different angles with no delay or split-second movement. This trick gave the viewer a truly immersive glimpse into the scene like never before. The team on "The Matrix" used an array of computer-controlled cameras placed in a circle around the subject. They also used large green screens so that the captured footage could be easily composited into the final production.
For this crew, the array of cameras was replaced by one moving cameraman, and the frozen motion was simulated by having everyone in the scene literally freeze in place while the camera was moved around the scene. I'd say they all nailed it. On a separate note, I'm fairly confident the ball handler wouldn't be called for a carry in today's NBA.
So what do you think? Was this an impressive way to pull off a big budget effect without breaking the bank?