“A long take is an uninterrupted shot in a film which lasts much longer than the conventional editing pace either of the film itself or of films in general, usually lasting several minutes. Long takes are often accomplished through the use of a dolly shot or Steadicam shot.” (thanks Wikipedia). This is undoubtably one of the most boner-inspiring shots for filmmakers, and everyone can debate their favourite. This is next to Martin Scorsese’s Copa Cobana long take in ‘Goodfellas’ of course (99.9% of the time this shot starts off the conversations). I’m a huge fan of the long take. Some directors like to cut fast to keep the pace high, but I believe holding the moving shot for as long as you can heightens not only the pace, but the tension too. I recently re-watched Alfonso Cuarón’s ‘Children Of Men’, and was again fixated with his car and battle scene long takes. Other notable favourite directors include Wes Anderson, Paul Thomas Anderson and Richard Linklater. The ‘Every Frame A Painting‘ channel on YouTube also showed me that Steven Spielberg is the hidden master of the long take, you can take a look at this very video at the bottom of the page. So without further ado, here’s a selection of some of my favourite cinematic long takes.
I know there are other honourable mentions out there and some that are criminal not to include. I’ve only included ones from films that I have personally seen. If there are any others then please drop them into the comments section below!