The Player’s opening shot

I rarely post stand-alone clips on here just for the sake of it, but I’ve decided to make an exception in this case. There’s a stunning scene in Steve McQueen’s new film Shame (which I recently reviewed for this site) in which protagonist Brandon (Michael Fassbender) runs at least five Manhattan blocks in an unbroken tracking shot, and it got me thinking about some of my favourite ever long takes. One that will always stay with me is the breathtaking opening shot of Robert Altman’s 1992 film The Player, an 8-minute wonder of technical brilliance, Hollywood in-jokes and great wit. Put a little bit of time aside, and enjoy, especially if you haven’t seen it before:

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