Monday, June 23, 2008

Shooting Kinski: Giuseppe Lanci

Despite the problems I have with the film, Night Sun is an extraordinary looking production thanks to the vivid photography of Giuseppe Lanci.
Revered cinematographer Lanci was born in Rome during World War Two and broke into the Italian film industry in the mid sixties as a camera operator. One of his earliest collaborators was controversial director Marco Bellochio on productions like Fist in the Pocket (1965) and China is Near (1967). Lanci's work in this period under directors like Bellochio (as well as Bernardo Bertolucci and Dario Argento) would inform the rest of his distinguished career.
He photographed his first film in 1977 and quickly became one of the most respected cinematographers in the Italian film Industry of the early eighties. He would continue working with Bellochio on films like The Eyes, The Mouth (1981) in his new role and would reach near legendary status in 1983 when he shot Andrei Tarkovsky's Nostalghia.
His work on Night Sun fits the film perfectly and makes it seem a much richer and finer production than it actually is. Working with some of modern cinema's most iconic and striking faces (including both Kinski and Charlotte Gainsbourg), Lanci's work on Night Sun is quite lovely although it would be ignored by the Italian film establishment come award season.
Since Night Sun, Lanci has continued working steadily in Europe in a large number of genres for a wide variety of filmmakers. While Lanci has since photographed some of the most beautiful women in modern film (including Asia Argento) Night Sun would unfortunately be the only time he would ever get the opportunity to work with Nastassja Kinski.

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