After borrowing an old Mitchell 16mm from his school’s communications department, independent filmmaker Alvin Case taught himself cinematography at a young age. He continued using 16mm and Super 8mm film into the 1990s when he started shooting video. Today, he speaks to Cooke about his decision to use a Cooke miniS4/i 18mm prime lens for shooting his upcoming psychological horror film.
"I was impressed by the lack of distortion at 18mm and the way the colour felt alive in digital capture - the Cooke lens really allowed the film to ‘breathe’ properly. I shot on an AJA CION 4K mounted on a vintage O’Connor fluid head, and the footage retained the warmth in the colour spectrum that I had envisaged for my upcoming feature, avoiding the overly cool and sometimes clinically sharp look common to many horror films."
"I had recently worked with the same camera using a Zeiss 18mm but I chose the Cooke miniS4/i 18mm prime lens for this project because I wanted a wide-angle with minimal distortion that also captured the coloration in an appealing way. Since I was working alone, I also needed a lens I could handle on my own for super sharp focus and aperture. The smooth mechanics of the lenses were outstanding; I could pan from bright to dark areas with one hand retaining accurate focus and aperture on close ups, all on the first take."
"I have long admired the 'Cooke look' image capture and was pleased to see it evident in a digital capture environment used within a 4K colour digital video system. This test shoot focused entirely on interiors and architecture so I’m now looking forward to testing other focal lengths with actors to get a solid background on skin tones before shooting the next feature."
"Using the Cooke lens was an opportunity I had long looked forward to, and the lens exceeded my expectations. I can happily now tell my production partners that the Cooke lenses are worth every penny of rental."