Definition April 2021 - Web


build, where it doesn’t matter how big or small your camera is, because you have the freedom to adjust the set and move around,” he says. “Most of my work is on the Arri Alexa these days, and I’m really familiar with the Mini, so that seemed like a great choice. Plus, it has internal NDs, which helps when you’re working with minors like Alan Kim [who plays David]. He’s really great, but often when you put glass filters on lenses, it can become distracting, especially for kids, since it automatically turns into a reflection.” Industry tricks like this also helped Milne when it came to lighting the trailer interiors: “I leaned on practical lighting as much as possible, so I could shoot wide, but also give Alan and the other actors as much freedom to do things on their own terms. In my experience, if you tell a child actor that they can only stand in a certain spot and look in a certain direction, it limits their ability to react and be fluid in their performance,” he explains. “I dressed areas of the kitchen, under the counters and around the bannisters of the hallway with LEDs. It’s hard to imagine life without them now. They have such a low profile and can be operated remotely, so my gaffer doesn’t need to be standing next to them and occupying space.” When reflecting on the fantastic performances in Minari , Milne says the

final argument between Monica and Jacob is his favourite. They walk out of a Korean supermarket – where Jacob has just secured a deal with its owner – and into beautiful, low sunlight, before Monica reveals to Jacob that she wants to part ways. “I had scheduled that scene for the blazing sun, so it would be glorious, despite being sad. But it was so hot that day, none of us could even stand in it. We looked around and found shade a few metres away from the back entrance of the supermarket. We got Monica and Jacob to walk over to it, and they end up having this amazing scene behind what is essentially a bland wall, in the interest of it not being so hot,” he says. “But creating that space between them actually worked out better. When the owner takes out some trash, he ends up catching them off guard a bit more, as opposed to almost bumping into them when he walks out, which is what was in the script.” Little moments like this are certainly refreshing, and while hopeful for an Oscar win, Milne is not getting carried away, given the strength of other films contending for best cinematography. He is just hoping Chung will be recognised. “I’m thrilled for Isaac and the success he’s getting, given how personal a story this is for him,” he concludes. MINARI IS NOW AVAILABLE TO RENT ON AMAZON PRIME

ABOVE Director Lee Isaac Chung talking to the actors on the set of Minari

for the sake of it, if it doesn’t work with the editorial of the film,” he says. “Only go in close when you want an exclamation mark on certain scenes to get the audience to sit up, which we did for key arguments between Monica [Yeri Han] and Jacob.” This meant lens focal range was crucial for Milne, and Panavision’s vintage primes, which sit between 20mm and 50mm, were perfect. “They’ve got some fantastic abnormalities, which also benefited the period nature of this film. They’re fast, low-contrast and, if you shoot at a wider aperture, tend to be sharp in the centre and fall out of focus around the edges, which we enhanced slightly for a few scenes,” he explains. Milne’s camera choice was also logistically driven, because – as well as the beautiful landscape exteriors – a lot of the film takes place in a practical trailer. “We weren’t able to pull the trailer’s walls, like you would on a studio set

Close-ups had to be earned, I don’t like shooting coverage for the sake of it

06 DEF I N I T ION | APR I L 202 1

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