From Frame to Frame: The Painting as Inspiration

By  · Published on November 21st, 2016

Famous works of art mirrored in famous movies.

Whether you’re a 19th century impressionist or a 21st century filmmaker, your basic aim is the same: to capture and reflect life in a moment or moments, the former a still image if you are a painter and the latter a series of moving ones if you’re a filmmaker. Art and film are very much connected and while the contemporary art scene is of course still very vibrant, filmmakers can be considered kind of modern-day painters, their brushes cameras, their subjects active participants, their galleries the multiplexes, and their art accessible to all no matter where they live.

We’ve seen a number of video essays that compare famous paintings to their filmic recreations in famous movies, but me personally, I never get tired of them, especially when – as they are in the following video from the great Candice Drouet – the movies represent a wide range of genres from horror to fantasy to musicals to thrillers to sci-fi to even superhero flicks. This universal cinematic appreciation for visual art further solidifies the kinship between the media and in fact the evolutionary bond they share, visual art the noble, stately elder and film the brash, bold, revolutionary upstart.

As you watch the dozen examples Drouet has collected, don’t just look for the subject or framing similarities, but also the color schemes, the lighting, and the way movement alters the impact of the images. At a touch over 60 seconds, Drouet’s made a film vitamin: compact, powerful, and good for you. Watch, enjoy, and share.

Novelist, Screenwriter, Video Essayist