One of my favourite cinematography techniques is the dolly zoom. When I was 16 and I bought my first ever video camera, a JVC30, this was the first technique I tried to learn (I failed miserably). I find it so fascinating and visually striking.
Vashi Nedomansky has put together a video highlighting the technique when it has been used throughout cinema history.
The Dolly Zoom is a camera shot made famous in Alfred Hitchcock’s VERTIGO (1958). It was invented by cameraman Irmin Roberts to visually convey the feeling of agoraphobia by zooming in with the lens while simultaneously dollying backwards the entire camera…or vice versa.
When the Dolly Zoom shot is used in conjunction with an unsettling or emotional moment…the viewer is swept up in a visceral visual that represents the pain/confusion/anguish occurring in the story. Here are 23 classic film examples of this technique in chronological order.