Wednesday, October 31, 2007
There is an extensive and well written history of cinerama in wikipedia providing a chronological account of the technological developments involved with the forms.
The widescreen film became a special theatrical event in the 1950s through three key developments:
- Films being booked as blockbusters to a small number of first-run theatres as opposed to standard distribution.
- The theatres were refurbished creating a more spectacular experience
- The total experience between the widescreen and refurbishment created a form of participatory recreation where the audience were active contributor in the process.
These changes to cinema becoming a theatrical event were significantly important because there was a decline in box office after World War II and a greater emphasis placed on leisure time creating a broader range of competition.
André Bazin who is one of the most influential film critic and theorists distinguished an audience’s participation in theatre and cinema by noting theatre as a live experience requiring an active involvement by the audience whereas, cinema separated the performance space. John Belton in
In the 1950s there were four key developments in widescreen:
- Eratz Widescreen
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
The film can be purchased at Amazon.com:
In Australia, the film can be purchased online through EzyDVD for $19.83 plus shipping:
The AWSM provide a series of poster and image galleries:
- Classic Posters Gallery - includes 20s & 30s precode posters, David O. Selznick classics and Gone With the Wind;
- Unusual Posters - There a six pages of posters categorised under witty titles by the studios who released the films including MGM and Columbia (megascope) and pioneers including Eastman Kodak;
- Hi Resolution Images - Is presented in two series based on technology development
Series 1 - Superscope, Cinerama, Cinecolor, Scanoscope, Todd-AO, Technicolor, DeLuxe Labs, Kinemacolor, etc.
Series 2 - Rectified Todd-AO, CinemaScope 55, 28mm Amateur, 35-32 Dual Rank, Iwerks QUATRO, VistaVision 8 Perf, MGM Camera 65, etc.
The image oriented site provides examples of different technological developments in cinema and briefly explains the problematic aspects of them without overburdening the reader with endless pages of details. After all, for an informal account wikipedia provides a great overview and there are many formal texts available in libraries and bookshops around the world. However, the site demonstrates the importance of understanding the history of images by looking at a sample of these images.
There is a clear understanding that cinema is highly dependent on technology, particularly Hollywood, which is evident in animation, science fiction, special effects...and well pretty much every technical element in filmmaking. However, the site highlights the cultural impact of technology at a relatively chaotic period of cinema.
To assist the implementation of sound Warners Bros. approached finance company Goldman Sachs and managed to convince the firm of the potential of sound, which lead to the joint venture between Warners Bros and Western Electric. In 1926, they established Vitaphone to produce sound films and market sound equipment.
- In small sized theatres - pianist/organist;
- In medium sized theatres - actor/musicians/noise making machines behind the screen;
- In prestigious theatres - orchestral accompaniment.
In general there were three issues to introducing sound in film:
Monday, October 29, 2007
Film theory is saturated with information about Melies, but the biographic information can be found on FranceFilm Website.
Author: James Lastra
Publisher: Columnia University Press
This film book is a gift to the truly nerdy. While this blog covers span of the early 20th century American cinema, Lastra goes back to the eighteenth century considering sensory theories around the development of photography, phonography and cinema as a leader in establishing modernity. Lastra takes an unique approach to a highly concreted and defined history to appreciate the development and present condition of contemporary society. It is hard imagine this book being an overnight sell-out, but Lastra demonstrates the relationship between cinema and technology are far complex than the general view. Furthermore, Lastra highlights the cultural significance of the relationship between the prototypes technologies and cinema.