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    Posted on Apr 28, 2016

    Proof That "Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince" Had The Most Beautiful Cinematography

    Cinematographer Bruno Delbonnel made this movie look truly incredible.

    1. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince has a strikingly different look and mood from the rest of the series.

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    2. That is, in part, because it's the only Potter film that cinematographer Bruno Delbonnel worked on.

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    3. The images tell a lot of the story without any need for dialogue, in part because of Delbonnel's work.

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    4. Delbonnel also worked on Amélie and Inside Llewyn Davis, and you can see both his ability to be dreary as well as his ability to make a movie seem whimsical and magical working together in HBP.

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    5. This quirky shot in the Burrow is strangely cozy, setting the mood for the space.

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    6. And the shot of the Hogwarts Express heading to school...

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    7. ...is considerably more cheery than the shot of it heading back to King's Cross in the middle of the year.

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    8. Shots within the school from earlier in the year are brightly lit and show a lot of life and bustle.

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    9. Including this glimpse into the Great Hall.

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    10. However, as the year goes on...

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    11. ...characters are increasingly more isolated.

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    12. The lighting of each scene seems to get darker and contain less color as we get closer to the end.

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    13. Even the Quidditch pitch, once Harry's place of joy, looks foreboding.

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    14. Symmetry is a big motif in the film.

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    15. Although there are often small details that disrupt that symmetry, creating a slight sense of unease about what's to come.

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    16. Color often reflects the action or emotion of a scene, such as Harry's burning hatred for Bellatrix.

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    17. Or Malfoy's increasing despair.

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    18. In an interview with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Delbonnel spoke about the challenges of using the same setting in a story with an entirely different mood.

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    19. "Some of the sets are there since the very first Potter," Delbonnel said when asked about the challenges he faced. "How could I light them in a different way?"

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    20. Delbonnel also mentioned that he considered Hogwarts itself to be sort of a "dark character" in the story.

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    21. Indeed, the halls seem to engulf characters in times of higher stress.

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    22. And a good amount of screen time is dedicated to showing its protection.

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    23. Delbonnel also found ways to creatively frame characters that simultaneously gave a sense of intimacy along with a sense of scale.

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    24. Here, Harry and Dumbledore's task seems insurmountable.

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    25. And Harry seems even more helpless in this long shot of his duel against Snape.

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    26. Delbonnel noted that HBP is "less about the big fights than the relationships between characters."

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    27. Which might be why this closer shot was chosen for Dumbledore's death.

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    28. Or why the camera finds details of each character to focus on, even in moments of action.

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    29. The bare Great Hall, again an instance of Hogwarts acting as a character of sorts, speaks for itself.

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    30. It's no surprise that Delbonnel was nominated for an Academy Award for this incredibly beautiful film.

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