When SS Col. Hans Landa visits the farm of the LaPadite family in "Inglourious Basterds," we expect things to get very bloody, very quickly.
Among action helmers, "The Hurt Locker's" Kathryn Bigelow is something of a throwback.
In any film with a mystery at its center, the denouement is bound to be unsatisfying. This is true of Vegas buddy comedy "The Hangover," but only to a point.
When the young aspiring journalist Jean Craddock goes to the motel room of aging, alcoholic singer-songwriter Bad Blake in "Crazy Heart," she gets more than a newspaper interview.
The addition of a simple birthday balloon makes a scene that was tense enough to begin with in "Brothers" into a rare sort of dramatic confrontation.
For the sequence in "Avatar" most similar in sheer jaw-dropping spectacle to the sinking of the RMS Titanic, look no further than the destruction of Hometree.
After blowing up the White House in "Independence Day" and flooding New York in "The Day After Tomorrow," Roland Emmerich manages to top his earlier disaster scenarios in "2012."
"The Damned United" is a great sports movie that's really about the kind of epic failure that leads to humility and greater success.
Compositing isn't the most glamorous of visual effects tasks, but it's among the most essential.
"I think the intention was that this is supposed to be a ride," says vfx supervisor Scott Farrar. "It's a battle movie but it's still the reluctant hero..."
Part of the challenge in presenting "Half-Blood Prince" is simply making sure the voters understand how much of what they see onscreen is visual effects.