Trailer for Multiple Visions (The Crazy Machine).
The mesmerizing images of Mexican cinematographer Gabriel Figueroa (1907-97) catalyze a fascinating master class in cinematographic philosophy in this gorgeous-looking, experimental documentary. Alternating glowing black-and-white excerpts from films shot by Figueroa with sharply composed, sensitively stylized talking-head interviews with 40 cameramen from different countries and generations, director Emilio Maill brings front and center men more used to being behind the lens and finds them, in most cases, highly capable of articulating their craft.
Revered for the great beauty and complexity of his cinematography, Figueroa had a long career in his homeland and Hollywood, working for top-drawer directors including Luis Bunuel, Emilio Fernandez, John Ford and John Huston. He shot more than 200 films, although here Maille draws solely on his Mexican films from the 1940s, 50s and 60s.
The cinematographers discuss a wide range of topics, including the portrayal of emotion through faces; the expressionist terrain of black-and-white; monochrome vs. color; and the future of cinematography in a digital age.