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About: David English

David English
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Posts by David English

Cold Around the Heart

It’s interesting to note that my two favorite film noirs of the 1940s — Double Indemnity (1944) and Out of the Past (1947) — also have the two best femme fatales (Barbara Stanwyck and Jane Greer). Which one is the deadliest? If both were in the room, I would say keep your eye out for […]

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Featured Photo

Leica has chosen one of my photos to illustrate the optical performance of the Leica X Vario. The photo is prominently featured on the main webpage for the camera.

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No Man’s Land

Though the two films are worlds part, Paths of Glory (1957) has a lot in common with Dr. Strangelove (1964). Both were directed by Stanley Kubrick, both are hard-hitting anti-war films, and both attack the folly of those who send others off to die. Yet Paths of Glory is the stronger anti-war film. Where Strangelove […]

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Best American Play

What if you took the greatest American play and turned it into a film using an ideal group of actors? That’s exactly what happened with Long Day’s Journey into Night (1962). Deeply autobiographical and searing in its emotional power, the play wasn’t supposed to be made public until 1988. Completed in 1942, Eugene O’Neill asked […]

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Dogged Determination

As the follow-up to his most successful silent film (Dr. Mabuse, the Gambler), Fritz Lang’s The Testament of Dr. Mabuse (1933) revives one of cinema’s most intriguing criminal masterminds. When we last saw Dr. Mabuse, he was driven insane by the collapse of his criminal empire. Eleven years later, he has progressed from a coma […]

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Parallel Worlds

I discuss how to use the Leica M Monochrom with wide-angle lenses to create surreal images. Check out my 32nd guest post for the Leica Camera Blog.

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Heaven on Earth

Wim Wender’s Wings of Desire (1987) is an unusual film. It’s the story of the guardian angels who watch over the citizens of Berlin. One angel (named Damiel) yearns to become mortal, so he can experience firsthand what humans see and feel. On one level, this film explores universal themes: the loneliness of being human, […]

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Pushing the Envelope

Some films are beautiful, and some films are strangely exotic. However, there are only a few films that are both beautiful and strangely exotic. Black Narcissus (1947) is one of those few. Quite simply, it’s one of the most beautiful films every made. It was once cited by the Technicolor company as the best example […]

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Same Only Different

The Awful Truth (1937) is one of the least appreciated of the top screwball comedies, in part because director Leo McCarey isn’t as well known as directors Frank Capra, George Cukor, Ernst Lubitsch, Preston Sturges, or even Howard Hawks. His best comedies include Let’s Go Native (1930), Duck Soup (1933), Six of a Kind (1934), […]

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A Most Unusual Day

Roger Thornhill should have known he was in trouble when he walked through the lobby, and the hotel’s music system played “It’s a Most Unusual Day.” Of rather, we should have known. He may not know it, but we do — he lives inside a Hitchcock film, so we can expect a healthy dose of […]

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Archetypal Western

Greatest Western of all time? Most influential Western? Archetypal Western? Stagecoach (1939) may be all three, depending on your point of view. John Ford hadn’t made a Western since 3 Bad Men (1926) and was eager to make another. Stagecoach was originally slated to be shot in Technicolor with David O. Selznick as the producer. […]

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Double Trouble

The best film noir centers on fate. Characters are destined to commit a crime because they can’t escape their past. Or a fatal flaw keeps them from seeing the obvious truth, so the tension builds as we’re unable to warn the characters, as we might be able to do in real life. Double Indemnity (1944) […]

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Q Black-and-White

How does the Leica Q stack up against the M Monochrom for black-and-white photography? Check out my 31st guest post for the Leica Camera Blog.

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A Leap of Faith

If the measure of a classic film is its ability to withstand the erosions of time, 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) would have to be regarded as the best science fiction film of all time. Though we have moved beyond it chronologically, its predictive value still seems valid. The decades-old special effects also hold up […]

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The Enigmatic 18

Here are some tips on how to use an 18mm lens — and more specifically, the Leica 18mm Super-Elmar-M. Check out my 30th guest post for the Leica Camera Blog.

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Vibrant Colors

This dye-based wide-carriage photo printer produces vibrant colors. Check out my review of the Canon Pixma Pro-100 in Computer Shopper.

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Pocket Cinema

Wow, it’s a pocket-sized pro-quality HD camcorder. Read my review of the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera in StudioDaily

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Keeping it RAW

Can this inexpensive photo-editing program compete with Lightroom? Check out my review of Corel AfterShot Pro at Digital Camera Review.

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Forge Ahead

Do you need to do some serious production-quality sound editing? You may want to read my review of Sony’s Sound Forge Pro 11 in StudioDaily