In 2001 Jack Cardiff (1914-2009) became the first director of photography in the history of the Academy Awards to win an Honorary Oscar. But the first time he clasped the famous statuette ... See full summary »
In 2001 Jack Cardiff (1914-2009) became the first director of photography in the history of the Academy Awards to win an Honorary Oscar. But the first time he clasped the famous statuette in his hand was a half-century earlier when his Technicolor camerawork was awarded for Powell and Pressburger's Black Narcissus. Beyond John Huston's The African Queen and King Vidor's War and Peace, the films of the British-Hungarian creative duo (The Red Shoes and A Matter of Life and Death too) guaranteed immortality for the renowned cameraman whose career spanned seventy years. Written by
Karlovy Vary International Film Festival
[Introducing Jack Cardiff prior to presenting him with his honorary Oscar in 2001]
For those of us who are 70 years old or younger, Jack Cardiff was shooting film before we were born.
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The first 22 names in the cast (through Michael Powell) are listed in the end credits in the order shown. The remaining credited cast members are identified by the narrator or Jack Cardiff. See more »
Celebrating an 80-year career...predictably colorful, unexpectedly moving
British cinematographer Jack Cardiff, who made a name for himself with his splashy camera-work on the classic Powell & Pressburger films "A Matter of Life and Death", "Black Narcissus", and "The Red Shoes", recounts the cinematic milestones of his long career. Transitioning from British cinema to Hollywood filmmaking in the 1950s, Cardiff went on to work with such diverse directors as Alfred Hitchcock, Henry Hathaway, King Vidor, and John Huston. The film clips are well used, and the celebrity fans (such as Martin Scorsese) and co-workers who comment are interesting, though the second half of this documentary (after Cardiff moved from director of photography to the director's chair) is left a bit sketchy. Receiving an Academy Award nomination as Best Director for 1960's "Sons and Lovers", Cardiff admits this was the peak of his professional career...and yet we are left uncertain why such a talented and respected man didn't receive better assignments in later years. Still, finishing off with Cardiff's recent honorary Oscar celebration for the bulk of his work was a nice touch, proving that wisdom and talent go hand in hand--and age doesn't necessarily diminish either.
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