I hate the word ‘movie‘, but this site, MOVIEBARCODE, (that I found (and have been meaning to blog for) just over a year ago now), I can forgive for the staggeringly gorgeous work it produces.

This, from The Matrix, for example:

The premise is simple, but Flowing Data describes it best –

Choice of color in a movie can say a lot about what’s going on in a scene. It sets the mood, changes the tone, indicates a change in point of view, so on and so forth, which is why moviebarcode is so fun to click through. The concept is simple. Take every frame in a movie and compress it into a sliver, and put them next to each other. Voilá. Movie barcode.

Seriously, as a film lover this site is a veritable treasure trove of thematic insight. Plucking a few favourites from the extensive site index, you can really see how this works both as art and as a window into how directors use shade and colour to help bring their overall vision to life.


The Lion King

If you’re as enamoured as I am with these images then you’ll be pleased to know that prints are available and, if the film you’re looking isn’t available, Mr Reid has published a handy ‘how to’ guide too.





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Author: James Whatley

Chief Strategy Officer in adland. I got ❤️ for writing, gaming, and figuring stuff out. I'm @whatleydude pretty much everywhere that matters. Nice to meet you x

4 thoughts on “MOVIEBARCODE”

  1. That is utterly the coolest thing I have seen in weeks. I think I may have to do some of a few of the films that aren’t on that list. Will also be especially interesting for the wife, going to send to her now, since one of her complaints about the later HP films is the colour choices (we’ve had the conversation a number of times).

    James Reply:

    Great stuff Kassidy 🙂

    If you do end up making any of your own, do drop us a note (or link back), I’d love to see them!

    Hope you’re well buddy,


    Kassidy M Kearey Reply:

    Gave one a quick try for the film The Other Guys. Had to fiddle a bit with the scripting, but overall it’s pretty straight forward. I think other films may produce better results.

    I’ll keep experimenting. 😉

  2. Neat. Reminds me of two things.

    1. Jason Salavon did something similar but horizontally way back in 2000 with Titanic:
    and with MTV’s top ten music videos in 2001:
    and Apocolypse Now and Taxi Driver as concentric rings:
    and a whole load of cool colour-averaged things:

    2. Eirik Solheim took a photo every half an hour from his Oslo window and then sliced up 3,888 of them up into a single photo with January on the left, December on the right:
    I did something similar with just 45 photos of a bit of Helsinki I passed each week in 2011:

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