Jack Cardiff would have to be mine, on account of his unique uses of color and texture in films such as The Red Shoes, Black Narcissus, The African Queen to name a few. Others worth noting include:
James Wong Howe
What are yours?
Freddie Frances-he did Lawrence of Arabia, right?
Bill Pope-the one who does the Matrix films, is that the correct first name?
Russel Metty-he did Touch of Evil, didn’t he?
I guess that’s it for now. Some of these cinematographers listed here are sometimes judged by one film such as Gregg Tolland, because I think I only have seen one of his films, that being Citizen Kane.
If I had to choose one (which is admittedly a bit silly) it would be Gordon Willis. He changed everything.
Wouldn’t say that there is a greatest of all time. Each cinematographer has a different set of skills that are perfect for different projects so it all just depends. I’m a huge fan of Anthony Dod Mantle and Jean-Yves Escoffier right now.
I can’t remember the full name of Hitchcock’s cinematographer: is it Robert Burke? I think he is really good as well.
Conrad Hall is tops for me.
Roger Deakins is damn good and very consistent.
I really like Darius Khondji, but his work on My Blueberry Nights made me question him.
Anybody feel free to talk about certain films and cinematographers on this thread
Can’t say there is a greatest. But the recent work of Terrence Malick has really impressed me. Even some of his films that I’m not crazy about, “The New World” for example, the cinematography kept me interested the whole time.
The Greatest Cinematographer is whoever happens to be shooting the latest Tourneur or Rossellini or Lisandros film.
Next up: Who’s the greatest editor of poets of all time?
hal 9000: hitch’s cinematographer was robert burks…..from strangers on a train through marnie, with psycho the lone exception…
burks gets my vote…..
no one has mentioned Christopher Doyle or Lubezki (at least, not by name)? what the fuck? I don’t know about all time, but they’re probably the best ones working today. Lubezki is on a roll at the moment, hard to find modern films that look better than Children of Men or his stuff with Malick.
Gregg Toland is only mentioned once? And no mention yet of Stanley Cortez, Arthur Miller, Daniel Fapp, William Mellor, James Wong Howe … ? Those were such amazing artists! For shame!
Anyhow, everybody mentioned already has done superior work, and a few really have done the ‘best of all time.’
Thank you, Danny Bailey, for remembering Oswald Morris. Too many people nowadays are beginning to forget his amazing work.
Didn’t we have a really fun thread on here about a year ago where we picked one cinematographer’s work on a single film and praised it individually?
Haskell Wexler deserves respect.
“Any time there is a poll of the best cinematographers working today, the list will be half-full. By default of being a pop resource, any list of remarkable image-makers is usually missing out on the entire avant-garde film world.”
so: peter hutton – cinematogod.
Elemér Ragályi is the most versatile cinematographer in my opinion and his work on the films of Pál Sándor is ridiculously good .
maybe robby muller… i admit i usually have no clue who DPs a flick…
Gregg Toland for Citizen Kane
Stanley Cortez for The Magnificent Ambersons & Night of the Hunter
William H. Clothier for Track of the Cat
Sergei Urusevsky for The Cranes Are Flying
Gunnar Fischer for Wild Strawberries & The Seventh Seal
Sven Nykvist for Winter Light
Yuri Ilyenko for Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors
Vadim Yusov for Andrei Rublev & Solaris
Henri Decae for Le Samourai
Vilmos Zsigmond for McCabe & Mrs. Miller
Giuseppe Rotunno for Amarcord
Luciano Tovoli for The Passenger
Robby Muller for Paris, Texas
Slawomir Idziak for The Double Life of Veronique
Emmanuel Lubezki for The Tree of Life
and Xaver Schwarzenberger for Fassbinder’s Veronika Voss, Lola, and Berlin Alexanderplatz …
the guy who works with wong kar wai, cant remember the name.
Karl Freund (in my opinion)
He only revolutionized cinematography, created the “three camera system” used in television shows, and worked on “Metropolis”, “Camille”, “The Last Laugh”, “Dracula”, "The Golem’, “Michael”, and “Key Largo”….
Sadly, not many people know or acknowledge the technical genius of what he’s done for the cinema world.
And the second best cinematographer i’ve ever seen….
is Vittorio Storaro
Simple Sven Nykvist.