The structural and emotional gambits upon which cinema of the past and present is founded have their roots in a number of factors, not least of which is one curiously under appreciated cinematic element: aspect ratio. Tucked away in the further reaches of a project’s production details on IMDb or found alongside a runtime on your favorite streamer’s ‘About’ page or average Blu-Ray case, this term quite simply relays the dimensions of a displayed image in terms of the relationship between its width and height. Aspect ratios common to contemporary consumer displays include a rectangular 16:9 for most televisions, laptops, smartphones and monitors, a largely square 4:3 for older TVs and some tablets, the 3:2 ratio often seen in 2-in-1 computing devices and 21:9, which is employed on ultrawide monitors and many projector screens. Continue reading What are Aspect Ratios and Why Should We Care?
When divorced from the charged docudramas and caffeinated capers of a certain amnesiac assassin that have sculpted the career of director Paul Greengrass, his latest, News of the World, already passes muster: a lively, capably produced and oftentimes contemplative Western with two terrific performances and a message that cuts through the contemporary blues. Yet there is more to it than that. Add to News’s greater success a willingness to lift a page from Greengrass’s entries in the Bourne franchise (sans memory loss) and its lead in Matt Damon’s Jason Bourne, in its examination of regrettably scarred but emotionally intelligent men who open the eyes of those around them as they skirt the very circumstances that divide opinions. Continue reading News of the World: Tom Hanks – Frontier Arbiter of Sincerity (Review)