The 10 Best Uses of Color in Film

I was initially drawn to photography mostly because of color. I find its usage both beautiful and fascinating and a power narrative tool. This great video celebrates some of the best uses of color in all of film.

What I particularly appreciated about this video is that it's not just a celebration of the most over the top uses of color in history (though those make an appearance and deservedly so when done well), but a shrewd breakdown of different parts and combinations of the color wheel and how certain films took advantage of those subsets in ways that greatly bolstered them. In "Only God Forgives," the extreme saturation in scenes that are often monochromatic enhances the intensity and evokes targeted emotions in the viewer. On the other hand, the soft, often quirkily paired pastels of "The Grand Budapest Hotel" are both relaxing and whimsical at the same time: they embody both the comedic and fantastical simultaneously, augmenting the exact world Wes Anderson so painstakingly creates. When a director picks a specific palette and sticks to it methodically, the results are often striking and can augment both the impact of individual scenes and the power of the overall narrative arc.

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Alex Cooke's picture

Alex Cooke is a Cleveland-based portrait, events, and landscape photographer. He holds an M.S. in Applied Mathematics and a doctorate in Music Composition. He is also an avid equestrian.

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