If only we could sharpen that image..
April 12, 2011 11:57 AM   Subscribe

I am a sucker for mysteries that involve clues hidden in photographs/film clips and am looking for other examples(SPOILERS for Blow Up, Veronica Mars and Stieg Larsson inside...)

I love the trope in mysteries of needing to find clues using film...some examples: blowing up the photographer's images in BlowUp to find the killer, looking at the film the soccer mom takes in Veronica Mars ( season 2)to find the identity of the guy who broke into Woody's house, and even text versions like in Steig Larsson's Girl with the Dragon tattoo where the protagonist needs to find more images from the children's festival in order to see what gave the girl who disappeared such a frightened look on her face.

Are there more examples you can think of that employ this trope? I know CSI type shows do this a lot, so looking for examples outside of that since it's so common there.
posted by sweetkid to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (24 answers total) 25 users marked this as a favorite
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posted by Rhaomi at 12:08 PM on April 12, 2011

posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:09 PM on April 12, 2011

you might enjoy the DVD
Curious Stories, Crooked Symbols.

There was a site a while back that was basically a giant game where each picture was the level and you had to figure out what the password was to that level by using what you saw in the picture. Sometimes the password was a word spelled out in binary by some small lights, other times it might be from a candy bar wrapper from the 1950s that changed names in the 70s, ....

I would love to find that site again. anyone?
posted by zombieApoc at 12:09 PM on April 12, 2011

It's about auditory, not visual clues, but I bet you would really dig The Conversation.
posted by milk white peacock at 12:10 PM on April 12, 2011

Enemy of the State
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:12 PM on April 12, 2011

Best answer: There was an episode of The Brady Bunch where Greg was able to blow up a photo he took of a football game to prove a receiver was off sides.

This is my my most embarrassing AskMe answer ever.
posted by bondcliff at 12:13 PM on April 12, 2011 [4 favorites]

Somewhat related:

Blow-OutThe Eyes of Laura Mars
posted by methroach at 12:13 PM on April 12, 2011

Blade Runner
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:20 PM on April 12, 2011 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Pattern Recognition by William Gibson might fit the bill
posted by longbaugh at 12:27 PM on April 12, 2011 [1 favorite]

The Wicker Man (original, not the Nic Cage version).
posted by hermitosis at 12:36 PM on April 12, 2011

This is not exactly what you're looking for, but the theme of finding new evidence in something familiar (in this case, memories) is common in giallo films. Whether you'd enjoy pursuing that depends on your tolerance for grand guignol.
posted by johnofjack at 12:54 PM on April 12, 2011

No Way Out
posted by Roger Dodger at 12:58 PM on April 12, 2011

The Spanish Prisoner
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:08 PM on April 12, 2011

Louise Penny, Still Life (a painting, which I hope counts)
posted by tully_monster at 1:23 PM on April 12, 2011 [1 favorite]

Best answer: DePalma's Blow Out is a deliberate rework of Blow Up and a pretty good movie too.
posted by octothorpe at 2:02 PM on April 12, 2011

Best answer: The Conversation and Enemy of the State would make a good double feature. Gene Hackman plays the same a similar character in both movies.
posted by kirkaracha at 4:28 PM on April 12, 2011

The Flanders Panel and The Club Dumas both meet your requirements.

If you value your tv remote though never watch the movie made from the second title. You will throw it at your tv.
posted by cjorgensen at 5:39 PM on April 12, 2011

Best answer: Not actually recommending, but Rising Sun uses this trope.

If you'd like to try it out at home, find the cat in this picture.
posted by jabberjaw at 6:07 PM on April 12, 2011

Response by poster: I see the kitty!
posted by sweetkid at 10:09 PM on April 12, 2011

Best answer: A couple of oldies:

Arabesque (1966) with Gregory Peck and Sophia Loren

Call Northside 777 (1948) with Jimmy Stewart
posted by marsha56 at 12:43 AM on April 13, 2011

Mel Brooks does a really good joke on the blown-up photo thing in "High Anxiety".
posted by AmbroseChapel at 2:45 AM on April 13, 2011 [1 favorite]

Not exactly what you want, but a Photograph plays a key role in Hitchcock's Dial 'M' for Murder. Actually it plays two roles, but to tell you would be a spoiler.
posted by Gungho at 6:59 AM on April 13, 2011

Best answer: You might have fun with Graham Rawle's quirky murder mystery/collage project Diary of an Amateur Photographer, which features an kinda creepy narrator who is attempting to solve a murder based on some old photographs he found. He posted one of the spreads from inside on his blog.
posted by redsparkler at 6:19 AM on April 14, 2011 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Peter Greenaway's "The Draughtsman's Contract" fits the bill. It's about an artist who goes around an estate making extremely detailed sketches, which later reveal the truth about a murder that happened around the grounds.

This has been bugging me for a full month now, and I finally remembered it today.
posted by lhall at 4:47 PM on May 10, 2011

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