It’s hard to say what my favourite thing about Steven Soderbergh’s new remix of Raiders of Ark is. Is it the total lack of dialogue? Or maybe it’s the vivid black-and-white rendering that makes you forget the film is supposed to be in colour. Actually, honestly, it’s the sick 8-bit soundtrack. That’s it.
Soderbergh didn’t transform this 1981 Steven Spielberg classic into a silent monochrome masterpiece just for fun. He actually made the changes to highlight the original director’s mastery of staging, a term he defines as “how all the various elements of a given scene or piece are aligned, arranged, and coordinated.” And the trick works. With just Soderbergh’s sort of awesome score — think Blade Runner meets Drive — it’s incredible how deeply you’re encouraged to study the shots. (Watch the full film here.)
Indeed, Spielberg is a master. “This filmmaker forgot more about staging by the time he made his first feature than I know to this day,” Soderbergh wrote on his blog, “(for example, no matter how fast the cuts come, you always know exactly where you are — that’s high level visual maths shit).”
So sit back and soak it in. It will feel a little weird at first — most of Thanks David!]