Presentation on theme: "Movies and the Impact of Images Chapter 7. “Star Wars effectively brought to an end the golden era of early-1970s personal filmmaking and focused the."— Presentation transcript:
Movies and the Impact of Images Chapter 7
“Star Wars effectively brought to an end the golden era of early-1970s personal filmmaking and focused the industry on big-budget special-effects blockbusters.” —Roger Ebert
Movies as Modern Mythmakers Tell communal stories – Evoke and symbolize our most enduring values and secret desires – Make the world seem clearer, more manageable, and more understandable Industry reacts quickly to social events and cultural shifts. Movies distract us from our daily struggles. Encourage us to rethink contemporary ideas
Early Film Technology 1889 celluloid – Bought by Eastman Edison patented kinetoscope and vitascope. Méliès and narrative film Nickelodeons – Silent films, “shorts” – “Democracy’s theater” – Numbers of nickelodeons rise rapidly.
The Power of the Studio System Edison’s “Trust” – Cartel of major U.S. and French producers – Exclusive deal with Eastman Defeated by Zukor and Fox – Went on to create their own oligopoly The studio system (1920s) – Created stars Mary Pickford key figure – Helped create directors as “auteurs” Zukor’s block booking – Exhibitors forced to rent new or marginal films with popular films Zukor and Fox worked to control distribution and exhibition.
Hollywood Storytelling Talkies – 1927 Warner Brothers’ film The Jazz Singer Starring Al Jolson Fox studio’s newsreels – Movietone captured first film footage with sound. Takeoff and return of Charles Lindbergh Blockbusters – Underwrite the 80 to 90 percent of films that fail at the box office
Hollywood Genres Action/Adventure Comedy Drama Fantasy/Science Fiction Film Noir Gangster Horror Musicals Mystery/Suspense Romance Westerns (See listings on pages 248 and 249)
1960s and 1970s: The Rise of Star Directors Dennis Hopper, Easy Rider George Lucas, American Graffiti Francis Ford Coppola, The Godfather Brian De Palma, Carrie Martin Scorsese, Taxi Driver Steven Spielberg, Jaws But where are the women directors? – “…busloads of young women emerging from film school. So why are 96 percent of films directed by men?” —Michelle Goldberg
Documentary Film Nanook of the North, 1922 Cinema verité – Portable cameras – Rough, grainy look – Robert Drew: key innovator – Frederick Wiseman: since the 1960s Michael Moore – Controversial Distributor refused to bring Fahrenheit 9/11 to screens.
The Transformation of the Hollywood System The Hollywood Ten – Investigations of alleged subversive and communist ties – Led by the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) – Blacklisted Hollywood Ten boycotted by major studios Paramount decision – Major studios forced to end vertical integration
Television Changes Hollywood Demographic changes after WWII – Average marriage age drops to 19. – Families start earlier. – Baby boom and staying home with kids By the mid-1950s TV replaces radio and movies for family entertainment. Movies develop technologies – CinemaScope, Technicolor
By 2006… More than 50% of domestic revenue for Hollywood studios came from video/DVD rentals. 90% of homes had VCRs. More than 76% had DVD players. – DVD introduced 1997 Sales began to outpace rentals. Viacom-owned Blockbuster – 5,900+ stores in U.S. – 2,600+ outside U.S. DVDs replaced videocassettes. HD DVD to be the next big format? The rise of NetFlix and other mail rental services
Hollywood and Home Entertainment “People have so many other things to do with their time that they view the prospect of going to the movies very differently than 10 years ago.” --OTX, a leading movie research firm, 2006
The Movie Business In 2005, 1.4 billion movie tickets were sold gross revenues = $8.99 billion Still…more people watch movies at home each month than visit theaters all year. 1970s: Multiplexes and megaplexes – The movies moved to the suburbs.
The Blockbuster Mentality Everybody wants to produce the next Star Wars.
The Major Players Warner Brothers Paramount Twentieth Century Fox Universal Columbia Pictures Disney – Only Disney not owned by large conglomerate
The American Way Do our films contribute to a global village in which people share a universal culture? Or do our films stifle local culture and diversity?