Follow TV Tropes


Extreme Close-Up

Go To

Ahem... This is a common technique in movies and television shows, Extreme Close-Ups ("ECU" or "XCU") are used when cameras zoom up to the face of the character in focus, sometimes zooming right in their eyes (with some letterboxing for good measure) or any other part of their face. Often time it's used to emphasize drama, and other times it's used for comedy. Maybe even add a hint of mystery.

Often used in moments of Thousand-Yard Stare, or the Mexican Standoff. Compared to Gross-Up Close-Up and Eyedscreen.

Needs a Better Description.



    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • The Rising of the Shield Hero: After Naofumi is cornered and accused of kidnapping Princess Melty, he appears willing to cooperate to avoid as much bloodshed as possible. That is until someone shouts "You mustn't listen to him!" and the camera quickly zooms onto Malty.
  • An early OVA based on Sony's Tama & Friends does this with the title character as his owner transforms into a cat.
  • An episode of the 2005 Doraemon anime had a pretty strange fascination with the title character's eyes as he demonstrates the Blind Spot Star to Nobita.
  • Jojos Bizarre Adventure loves to use this trope, especially when bizarre shit happens.

    Comic Strips 
  • This is given a Take That! on Calvin and Hobbes, where Calvin's dad so thoroughly disgusted by the overuse of this trope that he feels the need to watch his show from the other side of the room.
  • Hopelessly narcissistic reporter Roland Hedley from Garry Trudeau's strip Doonesbury tends to hog the camera lens, especially since he's been reduced to vlogging. It's gotten worse since the development of high-definition broadcasting: "Oh, God, you can see every pore!"

    Films — Animation 
  • Many of the major Looney Tunes from Space Jam get an extreme closeup, as do Michael Jordan and Stan Podolak. These closeups are noted by The Nostalgia Critic in his review of the movie, triggering yet another spate of mouth-foaming histrionics.
  • The page image plus corresponding quote come from Aladdin, where this literally happens to the merchant after he asks the audience to come closer.
  • The Cars franchise uses these a lot, especially in the threequel.

    Films — Live-Action 

    Live-Action TV 

    Video Games 


    Web Videos 
  • The Anime Man does this often with his face, usually when making a sarcastic aside or a similar comment that he wants to emphasize. He also tends to add speedlines for extra oomph.
  • ASMR videos often feature the creator coming very close to the camera, either as part of a roleplay or in order to speak directly into the microphone(s) behind the camera.
  • "Nightfall": Twice, the camera zooms in to Eve's face, until only part of her face can fit inside the frame. The first time both eyes are the focus, and the second time the focus is only on one eye. Both are done to facilitate showing the audience what Eve is looking at.
  • Dream Machine: One of the actors auditioning for the role of Duncan in Offcomer in 1.04. The Opposite of People. He’s afraid that moving too far away from the camera will mean the nuances of his Casablanca monologue will be lost.

    Western Animation 
  • Amphibia: In the episode segment "The Plantars Check In", the camera cuts to a hilarious facial close up of Sprig, who drank lots of caffeinated drinks.
    Sprig: (extreme close-up) I AM THE TIME LORD NOW.
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy: Parodied in "Don't Rain on My Ed", where the camera zooms on Ed's face as he yells "EXTREME CLOSE-UP!"
  • In the Looney Tunes short Duck Amuck, Daffy finds himself a wide distance away from the camera and asks for a close-up. What he gets is a small frame around him, then he spazzes out before the camera zooms at his Death Glare eyes.
    Daffy: This is a close-up? A CLOSE-UP, YOU JERK! A CLOSEUP!!!
  • Happens a couple times in the first few minutes of Son of Stimpy, and one of the surprisingly few times it's not the gross out kind. First there's an up close of Stimpy's butt seconds before the, um... "birth of Stinky". Then later when Stimpy tries to fart a second time for Ren, we see a close up of Stimpy's butt cheeks as they strain, swell up, and deflate like balloons.
  • Rugrats has a tendency to open episodes with a close-up of something and slowly zoom out to show what it is.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants is notorious for its use of Gross-Up Close-Up, but also includes other extreme close ups a lot.
  • One episode of Glitch Techs features Miko's face zoomed in while she rides on a jet-pack and asked for more juice for it.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: