As you can probably tell from looking at our Best Shots of the Year list, 2014 has given us some magnificent images. There are several shots that stand out—the haunting diptych at the end of “The Immigrant,” the baby-on-the-beach scene from “Under the Skin,” all of “Birdman.” And yet a true filmmaker, a true storyteller, can leave a mark on shots that are decidedly not as flashy. A true filmmaker can make idle shots of street corners look electric. Or, say, something like stock footage. To cap the year off, New York photography provider Shutterstock has crafted this neat assemblage of stock footage, shot and edited in the style of five of our most famous and influential filmmakers: Wes Anderson, Quentin Tarantino, Alfonso Cuaron, David Fincher, and Terrence Malick.
The video essentially showcases each filmmaker’s most pronounced visual motifs and, in some cases, the resemblances to that artist’s actual work is scarily spot-on. Wes Anderson, for better or worse one of the most recognizable American directors of the last 20 years, leads the pack with expectedly immaculate compositions of vintage phones, stuffed falcons, and lavish Victorian interiors, all adorned with the director’s preferred yellow Futura Bold font. There’s even a shot from the front of the moving canoe that is practically the same shot as an early one in “Moonrise Kingdom.”
Next up is Fincher, whose segment focuses primarily on surfaces: often those of laptops or cell phones glowing in the dark while a pulse-pounding synth score hums luridly beneath the surface. QT’s assemblage displays the director’s preferred fetishes against a grinding surf-rock tune, throwing in samurai swords, Western iconography and gore, lots of gore, for good measure. For Cuaron, the creators of the video chose to essentially stage what looks like a Sweded version of the “Gravity” trailer.
Which brings us to the Terrence Malick-inspired final moments. I won’t even bother describing the elements that compose this section of the video, because if you frequent this site regularly and you’ve watched the “Knight of Cups” trailer (we have, a lot), then you know roughly what ingredients will compose a Terrence Malick trailer. Let’s just say there’s actually a shot of a dude running his fingers through a wheat field. If you can get through the hilarious, “ruminative” voiceover (“The vengeance fueled by the sun, does it know all that it gives?”) without busting up laughing, then you’re a stronger man then I. Check out the three-minute clip below. [AV Club]