The Fountain

The Fountain

We watched The Fountain last night. It was recommended to us by Anile and Chris while we were in Mexico. I had seen the trailers and knew a bit about the production process used to create some of the “effects” seen in the film. We liked the movie a lot, but I have to agree with the NYT’s review that the characters were limited in the emotional scope they could portray. Felt like there could have been a deeper range of acting from the leads. But that’s not why I’m writing this …

The effects, what your eye sees, are beautiful. The lighting, is well beyond typical filmmaker perfectionism. The NYT’s has a great online piece with Darren describing how the “future” set was built here in Montreal. They also describe a bit about how the “space” visuals where done. Don’t watch if you haven’t seen the movie as it will contain spoilers. In fact stop reading now.

“One creative solution was uncovering Peter Parks, a specialist in macro photography, who had retrieved deep-sea microorganisms and photographed them in 3-D under partial funding from the Bahamas government. Parks brewed chemicals and bacteria together to create reactions of which Schrecker and Dawson shot 20,000 feet worth of film in the course of eight weeks for The Fountain.

To create the effects, Peter Parks had taken advantage of fluid dynamics, which affected the behavior of the substances that he photographed. “When these images are projected on a big screen, you feel like you’re looking at infinity. That’s because the same forces at work in the water—gravitational effects, settlement, refractive indices—are happening in outer space,” Parks said. The specialist’s talent convinced the film’s creative department to go beyond computer-generated imagery and follow Parks’ lead. Instead of millions of dollars for a single special effects sequence, Parks generated all the footage for the film for just $140,000.” — wikipdedia

NYT’s review of The Fountains | Darren Aronofsky describing some of the production process