An Introduction to Cinema
A film, also referred to as a “moviette” or a “moment,” is a sequence of visually moving pictures presented on a large screen, usually using audio, that create a moving picture. Some folks enjoy watching new movies in the theater after they are released. I enjoy them just as much as the next person. I will end this article by briefly describing what a movie is, according to Webster.
A film image is any part of a movie that is intended to be seen and that makes an integral part of the story it is portraying. The term “moviette” refers to any single element of a film image that is meant to serve a character’s purpose in the story. For instance, the car in which Joanna wears in the movie “My Best Friend’s Girl” is meant to drive her friend home. In this example, the car doesn’t actually move; it only stands still while the girl is driving.
The term “theatrical” refers to the viewing experience as observed in a movie theater. This includes the actual motion-picture viewing experience, but it also includes the aesthetic value that the film carries, i.e., the quality of the film prints and the quality of the film itself. Film theory suggests there are two general stages of the viewing experience, either linearity or non-Linearity, with each stage determined by the medium in use. (Aristotle claimed that motion pictures were produced by a transfer of information from a moving source to a stationary source, but this is not at all similar to how modern films work.) I will discuss both types of theatrical experience throughout this article.
The term “queer” refers to a film which depicts or deals with issues of gender, ethnicity, sexuality, and other non-heterosexual themes. The festival, which coined the term “queer” was the Cannes film festival of May 1997, drawing upon the works of queer film directors throughout the world. In addition to the Cannes Festival, other major events have been held to mark the coming of age of newer, more open film forms, such as movies with gay characters and animated films. For a film to be considered a “queer”, it must deal with or address one or more issues which are not resolved within the normal parameters of the English film industry, and may sometimes include elements which are taboo in mainstream cinema.
One of the most common areas of discussion in film studies is the question of the film medium. This can be discussed in terms of its technological development, but also of its social implications. For instance, film theory suggests that film has an effect on our sense of time and space, our cultural beliefs and attitudes towards authority, and our moral beliefs and attitudes toward behavior. It may also indicate our political views, such as our level of censorship or freedom of expression. It may even point to our aesthetic responses to film, whether we value the work of art as art or merely despise it.
Many of the most popular motion pictures are parodist, cult films which nevertheless enjoy huge popularity among people who appreciate a good comedy, a charming gem or an intelligent drama. These films fall into two main categories, road films and horror films. Road films usually take place on fictional places or settings, and deal with a local subject (usually a situation which has significant social or political significance to the film). They may be dramas, parody, parody, comedy, or a mixture of these elements.