Almost above all else, Wes Anderson is a director known for the aesthetics of his films. The dazzling perfection of his mise en scene, the color palate, the symmetry, the lighting, are so deeply individual that Anderson has created a sort of brand for himself. His films nearly shout, “This is a Wes Anderson movie!” And under a different, less interesting filmmaker, this tic could get old (admittedly, this writer has been tested once or twice) and feel like a mask covering up a lack of story or character. But Anderson, in recent years, has only gotten better at populating his intensely realized worlds with equally compelling characters and narratives (“Moonrise Kingdom” and “The Grand Budapest Hotel” are great examples).
But it’s often easy to forget that Anderson isn’t alone in creating these worlds. And a 14-minute video essay by Nick Hansbauer exploring the work of his longtime collaborator, the cinematographer Robert Yeoman, has arrived to shed some light on a fascinating career. Yeoman has been hard at work for three decades. He has had a versatile and prolific CV to date. Aside from working with Anderson, he has also been the go-to cinematographer for Paul Feig, and has lensed the comedy vet’s last three films (“Bridesmaids,” “The Heat,” and “Spy”), showing off his chops for comedy and action. The essay, though, mainly focuses on Yeoman’s work with Anderson, which is absorbing in its own right and makes for an interesting study.
Check out the essay below. Got a favorite Anderson/Yeoman flick? Sound off in the comments section below. [No Film School]