Jan de Bont Night
Koolhoven & Simons: Jan de Bont Night
Turkish Delight, Die Hard, Basic Instinct: all classics for which Jan de Bont did the camera work. Later De Bont also went on to direct, but tonight Koolhoven & Simons honor him for his original métier, that of Director of Photography and conclude with the main film Black Rain.
Jan de Bont has now lived in Los Angeles so long, a lot of people think he’s American. But De Bont was born in 1943 in Eindhoven, ‘the Netherlands’, and raised eyebrows as Paul Verhoeven’s cameraman, with whom he shot controversial films such as Turkish Delight, Katie Tippel and The Fourth Man – based on the book by Gerard Reve.
It was with Verhoeven that De Bont made the daring jump across the Atlantic to the US, where he specialised in camerawork for big, spectacular action films such as Die Hard, Lethal Weapon (3) and – again with Verhoeven – Basic Instinct.
A little extra
De Bont’s fame preceded him as a master of dynamic camerawork and lover of layered action scenes with lots of special effects. His eye for the psychological use of colour also made him a cameraman who had just that little extra that directors are always looking for.
Verhoeven returned to the Low Countries, whereas De Bont moved into directing and enjoyed great success with nail-bitingly tense action films such as Speed (1994) and Twister (1996); in typically American style, De Bont also had a few flops, including Speed 2: Cruise Control (1997) and The Haunting (1999).
Black Rain: Super-35mm
For Black Rain (1989), this evening’s main feature, De Bont took over the scintillating camerawork (Super35-mm) when cameraman Howard Atherton bailed on the project because of the frustratingly slow progress of shooting in Japan. For the lead roles – two New York detectives accompanying a Yakuza being extradited to Japan – Ridley Scott chose Michael Douglas, Andy Garcia and Ken Tanaka.
Martin Koolhoven & Ronald Simons
Koolhoven & Simons
Every month, Koolhoven and Simons will be scrutinizing the genre film, presenting films within pretty forthright themes that have never before been screened at Eye. Expect evenings on Trucker, Grindhouse or Revenge of Nature films. A tribute to rarely screened trailers and forgotten classics, where possible in 35mm, using films from Eye’s collection.
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