A tracking shot is when a camera follows a person or an object physicallyy moving with the subject- This can be done using tracks, handheld, ropes, Steady-cam etc. Long tracking shots impress me a lot as it takes a lot of planning and rehearsals to get it just right but if you do it can be the most immersive way to tell a story in my opinion as there are no cuts to divert your attention. There have been some absolute awesome tracking shots and we couldn't get them all in but here are some of my favourite ones.

1. Hard Boiled (John Woo, 1992)

This is an incredible action sequence by the gunslinging legend John Woo.

Enough said.

2. Elephant (Alan Clarke, 1989)

Elephant is a 40 minute film made for TV about the violence in Ireland. Each scene

Is done using long tracking shots which makes this movie quite revolutionary and

has inspired such Directors as Gus Van Sant & Harmoney Korine.

3. Boogie Nights (Paul Thomas Anderson, 1997)

This is one of the more docile tracking shots from Boogie Nights but it still is really

incredibley shot, choreographed and acted. Superb!

4.Warrior King(Tom Yum Goong, 2005)

This is an incredible 8 minute fight sequence all done in one shot. This took weeks

to make as they ould only do one take a week as it took 7 days to set up each attempt.

This scene really shows of Tony Jaas Athleticism,skill and stamina. Amazing

choreography and thought has been put into this scene which elevates the whole movie.

5. I Am Cuba (Mikhail Kalatozov, 196

This is an incredible tracking shot that makes me wonder how the hell did they do it!?

6. Old Boy (Park Chan Wook, 2003

Best fight scene in any movie? I think so.

7. Touch of Evil (Orson Welles, 1958

Classic! This is one of the first long tracking shots in cinema and is most

Suspenseful indeed!

8. JCVD (Malbrouk El Mechri, 2008)

This is a really good tracking shot showing that Van Damme is still working his

arse off and getting treated badly by directors. Very funny intro to a movie.

Very interesting movie.

9.Goodfellas (Martin Scorsese, 1990)

I would probably be shot and buried if I didn't include this onto the list!

10.The Player (Robert Altman, 1992)

Very funny satire of Hollywood & the long tracking shot.

 

Article Written By

Patrick Chamberlain

Patrick Chamberlain
Patrick Chamberlain was born in Hong Kong in 1989. He lived there for ten years of his life before travelling around the world for a year. He eventually ended up on the shores of Brighton where he spent his teenage years growing up. Whilst in Brighton he discovered the independent and foreign film section in his local video box. This led Patrick to discover a whole new cinema that he had never seen before. He realised that you could tell stories in so many different ways. After becoming hugely affected by this different type of cinema Patrick started making short little films with his friends. He took film at 6th Form and went on to study Film & Moving Image Production at the Northern Film School in Leeds. He graduated in 2011 and interned at Raindance. Currently he is a freelance shooter and editor. See www.patrick-chamberlain.com

23 thoughts on “10 Best Tracking Shots

  1. Hi, I have followed many courses at Raindance, which inspired me partially to make a short fiction movie, shot entirely in just one shot… for 12 minutes long: CHIT CHAT is the title. 😉

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