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Film Studies: Unit 2 - History of Cinema

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john meehan

on 26 February 2014

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Transcript of Film Studies: Unit 2 - History of Cinema

Films have the luxury of presenting a lengthy narrative in a compressed time frame, but editors need to be mindful of keeping basic story elements consistent throughout the film.
Home video market

VHS and DVD sales

Direct-to-Video

Faster and wider distribution
The Kuleshov Effect
The Kuleshov Effect is a film editing (montage) effect demonstrated by Russian filmmaker Lev Kuleshov in the 1910s and 1920s.
Changing one frame of a montage can change the entire meaning of a piece.
Alfred Hitchcock explains...
MONTAGE
Putting a series of shots together in a film (also known as editing or cutting)
p. 239
CONTINUITY
"Willful suspension of disbelief."
Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1817)

Audiences know what they're seeing isn't real, but they are willing to go along for the ride.
Aristotle (c. 335 B.C.)
The action in a play should take place over no more than 24 hours.
The Classical Unities
a play should have one main action that it follows, with no or few subplots.
A play should cover a single physical space and should not attempt to compress geography, nor should the stage represent more than one place.
The Unity of Time
The Unity of Action
The Unity of Place
William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
Only two of Shakespeare's plays (The Comedy of Errors and A Midsummer Night's Dream) observe all three of The Classical Unities.
One of the first major playwrights to violate The Classical Unities
By breaking the traditional rules, Shakespeare changed the way that audiences understood and observed theatrical drama.
THE CLASSICAL UNITIES
become the unofficial "rules" of drama for more than 1,000 years.
A crash course in the history of drama
(+ 1,700 new words)
Game Changer
First things first:
Edison Kinetoscopic Record of a Sneeze Jan. 7, 1894
Eadweard Muybridge (1830-1904)
Invented the Zoopraxiscope, which allowed images to be viewed in a quick, rotating series so as to create the illusion of motion.
Created "motion" pictures with a string of still images
Photographer
Thomas Edison (1847-1941)
The device was designed for films to be viewed by one individual at a time through a peephole viewer window at the top of the device
Developed the Kinetoscope
IMPORTANT FILM MAKING INVENTIONS
Phantoscope
Bioscope
Vitascope
Eidoloscope
Nickelodeon
1895-1926
The Silent Era
Success marks the end of the silent era and the advent of "the talkies"
1927
The Jazz Singer
Multiple-reel films
1905
1937
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
"The Golden Age of Cinema"
1927-1968:
1999
The Digital Cinema Age
New Hollywood
1968-1982
Contemporary Cinema
1982-1999
End of the Hays Code

Hollywood renaissance

Bold new subjects

Film school directors
Three-Act Structure

Linear Narratives

The Studio System

The Hays Moral Code
The Great Depression
Fewer movies, bigger budgets
Many movies made quickly
1929-1938
A TIMELINE OF AMERICAN CINEMA
(For a more detailed look at Cinema History, consult pages 640-671 of your textbook)
This week's homework:
Which cinematic development or historical period do you believe was the most influential or significant?

Explain your reasoning (using citations from your text) in one typed page. Due Friday.
Computer editing

Digital projection

Enhanced Effects

Online streaming
What's the OLDEST movie you've ever seen?

What stands out to you about this film?
1820s - 1830s
The first camera images
BOND. JAMES BOND.
"Dr. No" (1962)
"Casino Royale" (2006)
What was the biggest difference you noticed between the early films and the later ones?
MULTI-PLANE CAMERA
1937
Shoots multiple "planes" of images on top of one another at varying distances. Gives animated films depth and perspective.
1925
1998
2006

Film has its greatest impact not by the smooth unrolling of images, but by their juxtaposition.
Sergei Eisenstein
(1898-1948)
MONTAGE THEORY
BATTLESHIP POTEMKIN
The "Odessa Steps" sequence is one of the most famous examples of montage in all of film history.
WRITE YOUR REACTIONS.
Joining two images actually produces a "tertium quid" (a third thing), so the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
+
=
Films have come a long way in 100 years.

Camera, film, effects, and editing techniques have likewise evolved over time.

What differences stand out to you between these two 007 films?
MONTAGES
can be
LINEAR
JUXTAPOSED
OR
1939
1952
2001
UNIT 2: FILM HISTORY
SAVING PRIVATE RYAN
The "Omaha Beach" sequence is also one of the most famous examples of montage in all of film history.
WRITE YOUR REACTIONS.
PRAXINOSCOPE
Early drama and moving from stage to screen
1925
1998
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