Watch The Phenomenal Six-Minute Tracking Shot From ‘True Detective’

By February 11, 2014

This past weekend’s episode of “True Detective,” the fourth episode in the series’ first season, featured one of the most impressive long takes in the new golden era of television. Director Cary Joji Fukunaga has employed that stylistic technique before in his films Jane Eyre and Sin Nombre, but this was the first time it’s been used on the HBO series, and it left viewers with their jaws on the floor. Check it out below.


Fukunaga spoke with MTV and revealed some of the detailed planning that went into the shot, and that whole account is worth reading. Long takes are one of my favorite storytelling devices in film, and seeing one pulled off with this much mastery as last Sunday’s episode unfolded was a great surprise. Is this the only time Fukunaga will choose to use that technique over the course of this first season? We’ll have to wait to find out, but since these shots require an immense amount of planning, I’m guessing we won’t be seeing another one in the next few episodes. That’s actually fine with me, because it allows this one to stay notable within the context of the show. When all is said and done, this will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of the entire series.

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Ben is a writer living in Los Angeles, California. His work has been featured at,,,, and many more sites across the web. Some of his favorite movies include The Rocketeer, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Tombstone, Lucky Number Slevin, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Collateral, Double Indemnity, Back to the Future and The Prestige. Follow him on Twitter: @BenPears.