SOSA Time Code Links

Here’s a list of Amazon links to the individual films listed at the end of chapters in both the print and audiobook versions of Secrets of Screen Acting.

These links are up to date, but if you find something that is incorrect, please let me know at [email protected].

Complex Sequences

Barton Fink

(leaving John Turturro and Judy Davis, we go down the plug hole) 01:04:40

The Blind Side

(lots of mirrors for Sandra Bullock and Tim McGraw) 00:53:40

Bridget Jones’s Diary (Special Edition)

(two cameras simultaneously shooting Renée Zellweger singing with different sized shots) 00:05:35

The Dead

(mirrors and moves for Donal McCann and Anjelica Huston) 01:05:25

The Ghost

(how long to rehearse and get the note passing to be correct?) 01:56:05


(jeweler’s shop with reflections for Meryl Streep and Sidney Armus) 01:32:45


(inside the car: cleverness of camera and Steven Spielberg’s staging) 00:56:10

The Shawshank Redemption

(long shot and close-up all put together) 01:57:35

Stage Fright

(two and a half days for Marlene Dietrich and Richard Todd) 00:00:55

Continuity Problems


(toy bricks all over the place for Ray Liotta and Lorraine Bracco) 01:21:00

Match Point

(Jonathan Rhys Meyers’s hand is down or up on the bench) 01:11:05

The Usual Suspects

(an airplane with a changing number of engines?) 00:30:00

Long Takes


(very complicated walk for James McAvoy and friends) 01:02:35

Barton Fink

(a long take to start the film) 00:01:35

The Bonfire of the Vanities

(an opening “clever” shot) 00:01:25

Carlito’s Way

(a complicated escalator sequence with Al Pacino) 02:04:55

Children of Men

1. (a car chase full of “how did they do that?” moments; see “Camera Movement Children of
Men” YouTube 2011) 00:25:05
2. (baby rescue, with guns and explosions and – everything) 01:20:20


(back entrance to club: the underbelly and the surface sheen) 00:30:10


(two and a half days for Marlene Dietrich and Richard Todd) 00:00:55

Henry V

(very long walk for Kenneth Branagh, with lots of soldiers) 01:50:05

A History of Violence

(a slow opening shot with terrible consequences) 00:00:15

Love Actually

(following the Prime Minister from his car to deep inside Number 10, where he talks to his staff with his Hugh Grant-isms) 00:07:05

Nine Lives

(all nine little films are one continuous shot –but look particularly at the Robin Wright and Glenn Close scenes)

The Player

(a very long opening shot, competing with all others) 00:00:10

The Protector

(the longest single developing shot Steadicam fight) 00:59:15

Touch of Evil

(Orson Welles’s long complicated opening shot, which started the trend) 00:00:55

Trouble On Set

Bus Stop

(lines fed from above to Marilyn Monroe? – not if this is the edited version) 00:56:00

Day for Night (La nuit américaine)

1. (the cat won’t do what is wanted) 00:51:20
2. (finally a cat performance that works) 00:53:25

Lady in the Lake

(what Robert Montgomery has to do when the camera “is” him) 00:03:55

The Prince and the Showgirl

(we are told that it was Marilyn’s fault it needed twenty-five takes to get this shot right – and now see that it is a very complicated track and crane sequence, needing many takes to get it right) 00:14:40

Roman Holiday

(William Wyler told Audrey Hepburn she would be sacked if she did not improve)


(fast circular track round the table of seven people arguing) 00:35:45


Children of Men

(Disc 2: delivering a baby) 00:00:00


(Special Features: Alien Encounters: The Special Effects: Bill Clinton) 00:04:20

Day for Night (La nuit américaine)

(a false window for Jacqueline Bisset) 01:20:25

My Week with Marilyn

(Judi Dench at the read-through – but she was not there) 00:15:05

Side by Side

1. (Disc 2: James Cameron on what’s real) 00:20:10
2. (Disc 2: John Malkovich: camera truth) 00:08:45

Sin City

(opening sequence) 00:00:20

Working On Set

Day for Night (La nuit américaine)

(opening shot of what it is really like) 00:01:50


1. (Disc 2: Magnolia diary: first shot) 00:10:55
2. (Disc 2: Magnolia diary: tracking on set) 00:46:15
3. (what the tracking shot looked like in the film) 02:51:25


1. (Bonus Material: Documentary: technical kiss) 00:22:10
2. (Bonus Material: Documentary: Hitchcock moves her face) 00:31:05


Side by Side

(Disc 2: Walter Murch on digital acting) 00:12:25


(toy bricks come and go for Lorraine Bracco and Ray Liotta) 01:21:00


(vast skies with very different cloud covers) 01:28:05

Match Point

(hand on or off bench for Jonathan Rhys Meyers) 01:11:05

No Country for Old Men

(overcast skies with a sudden burst of blue) 00:29:40

Hamlet (1996)

(Reece Dinsdale as Guildenstern barely gets a look in) 01:09:05


(who is looking at who in bed? Which shoulder for Saoirse Ronan? Or for Jessica Barden?)

Journey to the Center of the Earth

1. (two in doorway looking the same way) 00:04:10
2. (three in doorway all looking the same way) 00:14:20

The Shining

(Kubrick deliberately chose this confusion for Jack Nicholson and Philip Stone) US 01:27:05;
UK 01:08:25

Digital Effects


(James McAvoy acting with many invisible background extras) 01:02:35

Black Swan

1. (Natalie Portman and friend as the White Swan) 01:25:30
2. (and both as the Black Swan) 01:32:10

The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers

(Andy Serkis as the Gollum) 00:06:40

The Score

(Marlon Brando is made to smile) 01:52:40

Side by Side

(Disc 2:Anne Coates on tears in Keanu Reeves’s eyes) 00:16:25

Editing Tricks

The Day of the Jackal

(edited to hide the mistake of Edward Fox and the policeman looking the same way)

The Fifth Element

(cut where you can between Gary Oldman and Tricky) 00:44:45

Rain Man

(making sure there is no intelligence in Dustin Hoffman’s eyes) 00:42:20

Listening Reactions

Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead

(Marisa Tomei has good reactions in car) 01:17:45

Bonnie and Clyde

(everyone reacts well in the car) 01:03:15

Last Night

(Keira Knightley, the wife, and Eva Mendes, the rival, react differently) 00:05:20

Love in a Cold Climate

(no one speaks for twenty-two seconds) 01:12:20

Prime Suspect 1: A Price to Pay

(two acting giants, Zoe Wanamaker and Helen Mirren, battling with reactions) 03:00:10

Six Days Seven Nights

(sugar coated between Harrison Ford and Anne Heche) 00:28:25

4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days (4 luni, 3 saptamâni si 2 zile)

(family meal, with Anamaria Marinca showing us what she is feeling) 01:14:00

Bridget Jones’s Diary

1. (Renée Zellweger’s secret thought) 00:52:10
2. (and now her MCUs) 00:52:40


(Ben Kingsley’s thoughts on seeing the drawings) 00:05:35

Last Night

(Keira Knightley’s secret thoughts seeing her husband with another) 00:04:55


(Tom Cruise trying not to answer questions) 01:24:25

The Prince and the Showgirl

(big close-up of Marilyn Monroe giving a toast) 00:24:40

Singin’ in the Rain

(Jean Hagen would not really let her beloved audience see how upset she was – unless only the film audience was seeing it) 00:11:45