Roger Deakins, the famed cinematographer that he is, actually had a lens commissioned to create a dreamy old camera look. A good example of this lens in use is in the film The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. In some scenes you can see the image have a dramatic and blurry drop of in sharpness and detail as you move towards the edges. The nickname for this lens is the Deakinizer.
In a more technical explanation the lens looks like it constantly has that zoom in blur effect with teardrop bokeh. It is incredibly hard to achieve in post. If you want to make your own, chungdha has a quick tutorial.
The first, and least preferred method, is to use a wide-angle lens attachment. Instead of attaching the adapter properly, you are going to flip it around. The problem here is that the connection is likely not very secure. Plus, some lens and adapter combinations won’t work due to vignetting or size issues. It might work for you and if you have one already it’s worth a shot.
Second is the preferred method as it uses some fun classic lenses and a tilt adapter to give you move control. It is a modified Mir 1B 37mm f/2.8 lens on a tilt-shift adapter. The adapter allows you to move the spot focus around and will hold it in place.
To modify your lens you’ll need a lens wrench to open up the front of the lens and flip the front element around. This should get you the effect you are looking for. It actually produces some good detail at the center point that is in focus.
It certainly isn’t an everyday option for video and you should have a good idea behind why you want this look. But if you want it then these are some great ways to get it.
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