Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Webiste Review - American Widescreen Museum

The American Widescreen Museum provides a range of information on range of non-current technology used in cinema. Although, do not be mistaken...it is a very busy site heavily using bright red and yellow. If one is capable of adjusting their eyes to the brightness there is some wonderful information on widescreen, cinematography, colour and sound films.

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.

No comments: