What do you think of when you hear the word “movie”?

by Charlene Tinker, June 2014

600 words

2 pages


What do you think of when you hear the word “movie”? Has your perception changed since reading this chapter? In what ways?

Ordinarily, the word “movie” creates a rather positive train of thoughts, as to me, movie is associated with relaxation, esthetic pleasure and, well, an enjoyable pastime that is wonderfully and inevitably linked to leaning something new about the world, and most importantly, about yourself. My perception of this multi-faceted term has not so much as changed after the reading of this chapter, it just evolved, as it was suppose to, when you are improving and deepening your knowledge on a certain subject. Perhaps, the perception of the decisions made throughout a process of movie-making has changed, as now it appears that every choice that is being made is pre-determined by a myriad of factors, it is really thought through and delivers a certain message, rather than being spontaneously creative or even accidental.

How is experience of seeing a movie different from watching a play? Reading a book? Viewing a painting or photograph?

A painting and/or a photograph cannot convey the richness of the movie picture, as a movie is much more than just a single shot, it is a conjugated sequence of individual shots that capture everything (sometimes, you even fall under the impression that you can even smell that coffee from the screen), that simply capture all the dimensions of life possible. Paintings and photographs capture still images, which are also great and frequently breath-taking, but which are also less captive, as indeed, they are limited in their power to reflect the world around. The possibilities of movies and stage plays also differ, as in the movies the viewer is being led through the important moments, dramatic and life-altering experiences are brought to the viewers’ attention, while the stage play limits its viewers to a single wide-angle view of the action.

In what ways do movies minimize viewers’ awareness that they are experiencing a highly manipulated, artificial reality?

The creators of the motion pictures speculate their viewers’ attention and awareness by precisely following similar entourage, setting, costume designs etc. Usually, the minimization of the viewers’ awareness is being delivered through the fade-out/fade-in transitions, through low-angle shots, through cutting on action (the most common editing technique) and other invisible cinematic practices.

What do we mean by cultural invisibility? How is it different from cinematic invisibility?

Cultural invisibility means that the movie picture seemingly unintentionally touches upon very important values, indirectly popularizing and reinforcing them. Cinematic invisibility revolves around editing techniques, sound effects, etc. that can bring to the viewers’ attention the exact moment, scene, subject, while cultural invisibility is about the actual essence of the movie, the story that is being told.

What are some of the expectations that can affect the way viewers react to a movie?

The expectations connected to a particular producer, director, screenplay writer, actor etc.; the expectations connected to the viewers’ habit to see a strong protagonist, who successfully pursues his dream, confronts the obstacles and antagonists, along the way; …

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