s it just me or is "Hold Onto Hope Love" entering Ben Rector territory as for as overuse? Give it one more chance though cause this film from Belvedere Stories is fantastic. A couple things really jumped out to me the first time I saw it (besides the flat out gorgeous cinematography and the excellent, clean sound bites). 1) I love that a lot of the lighting is really dramatic without being overly contrasty. Look, I get it. A lot of prep happens in hotel-type rooms where there is one main light source - a giant window. I know what it's like to feel like you have to choose between being able to see the subjects in the room and having blown out windows or having the people be more in silhouette and being able to see out the window. Take notes on this video's prep sections. They definitely push more in a darker direction, but the filmmakers achieve a consistent richness to the shots without ever going into extreme silhouettes. 2) Another common obstacle wedding filmmakers face is getting good shots of the people giving toasts. In a lot of the videos I watch, the shots of the toasters are the weakest parts visually. You want to (and should) use a sound bite, and you want to (and should) briefly show us who's talking so it's not just a "voice of God." Again, take some notes on the shots in this film. The people giving speeches are well lit, the cameras are at a good angle in orientation to the direction the people are facing, and the lens is long enough that we're not distracted by anything potentially going on in the background of a wider shot. Between those two things, it feels like the filmmakers were always in control of their shots instead of it being the other way around. It's the little things that take a video from good to great. Bravo, Belvedere Stories.

Video courtesy of Belvedere Stories

Music: "Hold Onto Hope Love" by Amy Stroup licensed via Musicbed