As we approach the end of 2015, our minds and newsfeeds are full of end of the year lists, best-ofs, worst-ofs, and the ubiquitous guides to the greatest holiday films. Whether you are an ugly sweater wearing gift-giver or a jaded cynic (like me), traditions are oftentimes unavoidable, but a way to reign in the new is to use different approach — trade holiday cheer for radiant whitewashed snowscapes.
Instead of plopping down with the family to watch something “Peanuts”-related for the umpteenth time, opt for a film like “Dr. Zhivago,” David Lean’s stunning wartime masterpiece. In a new short video from BFI, the use of snow in film is considered, and more aptly, how exactly it’s made. ‘Zhivago’ is just one of the examples BFI uses, explaining that despite the setting in Russia, the film was actually banned by the Kremlin and filmed in Madrid — during the summertime no less. The essay also digs into how the wintry landscapes were created in Stanley Kubrick‘s “The Shining” and Frank Capra‘s “It’s A Wonderful Life.”
Nowadays, of course, there’s CGI, but there’s no substitute for the real thing (yet). Take a look at the video below for some other examples of wintery delight.