Perhaps more than any other art form, film relies heavily on technology. On one level, the history of cinema is the history of technological innovations. In this session, we will outline the history of film technologies from the 1890s to the present and discuss how these developments have impacted cinema as an art form. We will also look at challenges posed to cinema from other media and discuss how cinema has reacted to them.
Assignment Due for this Session
Please read the following article by Ryan Gilbey in The Guardian, which argues that cinema (good, old-fashioned movie theaters) will be able to fight off the threat of the internet just as it fought off earlier threats from tv and home video:
Let's get something straight: nothing can compete with cinema, and nothing ever will. Audience numbers and box-office takings will always fluctuate. But suggesting that downloading can ever provide an alternative to cinema is like saying that fast-food chains will kill off restaurants. The experiences are not comparable.
History does show cinema's resilience, but perhaps this new "threat" is unlike the others in that it is not only a new venue for viewing films, but also allows for a new means of distributing films. Filmmakers can now reach spectators directly without studios, tv stations, or distributers as middlemen. What do you think? Think about all of the places in which you have watched a film in the past year or more. Are any experiences especially memorable (good or bad)? Does it matter where and how you watch a film? Please comment on this post below by clicking on Post Comment.