Apple's latest addition to its 'Shot on iPhone' campaign is an epic journey through cinematic history, and proves exactly what's possible when shooting a film using an iPhone (which is good, as that's kind of the point).
Filmed by Oscar-winner Damien Chazelle, the nine-minute film, titled 'The Stunt Double' (see it below) is the first in the campaign to be shot vertically, and the footage is tailor-made for this format, something that Chazelle was hyper-aware of and calls "part of the fun" in the accompanying Making Of video.
The vertical format, with the black space around it initially feels slightly 'off' (we're so used to seeing everything set horizontally and filling the screen). However, it quickly becomes clear that the vertical format is the jewel in the film's crown. With the action taking place vertically (think parachutes dropping from the sky) and close ups that go slightly offscreen, the unusual styling left us inspired to see what we could achieve with one of the best camera phones.
Viewers follow the whirlwind of a stunt double's career. It's a plot that lends itself to the aim of the campaign, with the diverse styles making use of the entire cinematic range, including contrasting colour palettes such as vibrant old Hollywood (just like La La Land – Chazelle's Oscar-winner), cool action thriller, and black and white silent film (to name just three).
"I just think back to when I was a kid, playing with much less sophisticated technologies than the phone," says Chazelle in the above video. "Like old VHS camcorders and things like that, and just trying to do my version of Hollywood movies with what I had."
The astonishing level of detail (check out the glistening sweat on the hand of the cowboy) certainly shows how far filmmaking technology has come in Chazelle's lifetime – there's no hint of a shaky camcorder here.
Everyone may be talking about how the iPhone 12 could smoke the iPhone 11 with its upgraded chip, but it's clear that incredible things can be achieved with the handset you've already got. Though if you're not an Academy Award winning filmmaker, you might also need these top video editing apps.
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