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The dying art of film

Updated: Jun 6, 2023

When deciding what camera to use when shooting your next film, almost everyone will choose from the long list of digital cameras around Blackmagic, Canon, Panasonic, & Sony all make great cameras. The convenience and the picture quality of these camera make them an obvious choice for filmmakers. Digital cameras are sharp, easy to use and your material does not need to developed after shooting. Many of our favourite movie titles are shot on digital cameras. With all the advantages of using a digital camera you may assume that using film is a thing of the past, but is it really?

With digital cameras, resolution is determined by the number of pixels within a set area of a frame. With pixel counts up to 4,000 (4 K) digital cameras are capable of crystal clear picture quality but is it necessarily better? Film does not have pixels so an analysis of a film’s resolving power is calculated through angular resolution. In my modest opinion film is warmer and the colors more rich.

The feel of a digital camera in your hand while filming is nothing spectacular, it feels like holding a piece of plastic. Contrarily the feeling of an Arriflex 16mm camera in your hand with it's little engine running in your palm is without a doubt one of the most sensual experiences I have ever known.

The editing process is also simplified in the digital age, we use computer software like DaVinci Resolve , Adobe Premiere or Final Cut your footage is transferred from a digital camera on a small SD memory card onto your computer software timeline ready to edit. The whole course of action is fast and accurate. Compared to an analog 16mm Ciro Guillotine Tape Splicer as seen in the video below, digital media editing is for lack of a better word "neater".

It can be argued that digital technology is missing warmth, a soul, a certain Je ne sais quoi. I don't mean to be sentimental, I certainly see the positive attributes of digital cameras and editing. When it comes to TV shows or TV news digital is the obvious choice, it's fast, easy and costs next to nothing.

On the other hand Cinema shot on digital cameras to me seems like a short cut, a cheap rip off. Quentin Tarantino said it best in this interview.

Quentin Tarantino and other cinema purists like him, sadly are fighting against the general direction of cinema and camera technology in the 21st century. Digital will eventually replace film the way it replaced vinyl. Confined to old dusty museums and personal collections, film is quickly becoming a relic of the past.

Digital is easy to use and cost effective. Technology is catching up to the point where shooting with a digital camera is not only better for low budget productions but a better option for picture quality as well. Here at Cinemagic we have the best digital cameras and post-production facilities available in Kuwait. With all the necessary tools at your disposal, what’s stopping you from realizing your film-making dreams?

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