Back on Valentine’s Day, we posted an article about a couple of films shot with the Panasonic Lumix GH2 that were making waves at the Sundance and Slamdance Fim Festivals. Now one of those films, a sci-fi thriller by director Shane Carruth called Upstream Color (see trailer at the top) is starting to pull some big numbers at US Box Offices, amassing over $300,000 USD in receipts (and counting). This is great news for indie filmmakers, especially considering that it’s now possible to capture cinema quality HD footage with a camera that costs less than $1,000 USD, and there are other advantages to the GH2’s smaller form factor as well.
Upstream Color film and production notes…
The film was shot on the Panasonic GH2 with hack, Voigtlander lenses and the Samyang / Rokinon 85mm F1.4.
The film is also now available to download / stream from various places, [but] if you want to wait to see the GH2 perform in a proper theater (like me) I recommend seeing it in a cinema. You can see the latest screenings here.
People say it looks glorious on the big screen.
The film has also been met with a very enthusiastic response by critics, with the Boston Globe calling it a “hypnotic thriller” and the Hollywood Reporter saying the film is worth seeing for “brilliant technique, expressive editing, oblique storytelling and for discovering a significant new actress”.
The Telegraph’s critic said “my immediate desire when it ended was to stay in my seat and watch it all the way through again.”
Advantage – GH2…
The film truly makes use of the unique point of view made possible with such a small camera, placing it in all kinds of places you wouldn’t normally put a heavy Alexa (like on a car dash or in a swimming pool). I highly recommend seeing this film, even if you are not interested in seeing how the GH2 performs on the cinema screen. (Read article on EOSHD)
My 2 Cents
It’s great to see that someone with a limited budget can now realistically bring their vision into reality, and cameras like the GH2 (and now the Lumix GH3 and Blackmagic Cinema Camera) are proving that you can indeed achieve superb image quality with a smaller sensor. Some people were disappointed that the new Panasonic Lumix G6 is still utilizing the sensor from the GH2, but I’m thrilled. That sensor has proven to be capable of amazing things in video, and Panasonic are adding still photo quality to the mix as well. With the G6 incorporating much more advanced video capabilities with a price tag of $749 USD, upstart and indie filmmakers now have a variety of choices to get their vision onto the big screen. These are exciting times!