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Film Posters Week 1 - The Psychological Experience of Watching Films / The Impact of Films on Society
spacer "It's Only a Movie! It's Only a Movie" -
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Class Meeting #1
Monday, August 24
6:30 PM - 9:15 PM
AB2 249

Reading Assignments
Susanne Langer, "A Note on the Film," in Film: An Anthology, ed. Daniel Talbot (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1959) pp.51-55.

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Supplemental Books
An excellent book on the psychological and emotional impact of film technique is Sight, Sound, Motion by Herbert Zettl
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Week 1 Topic - Why do YOU go to the movies?

In Class Discussion
I. The Film Experience
Movies start with some aspect of society we are familiar with, the film's "convention." But the creators add plot twists, characters we identify with, and other narrative devices to give the story a new flavor to attract audiences. This is "artistic invention."

No familiar aspect of society = boring movie.

II. "Going to the Movies"
1. Different content or scope
We go to films to see what we can't see in real life, or at home.
2. A social activity. The film is a "social integrator."
We "go to" a movie, we "watch" TV. Films are always funnier, sadder, scarier in a crowd.
3. Strong cultural force
An entire generation learned how to look, act, and talk from the movies.
4. Relief

III. The Psychology of Movie Viewing
1. Movies present a vivid, visual presentation. The audience is receptive.
2. The special characteristics of movie viewing - the dark, social isolation, big sound, big screen, forces the viewer into deeper concentration. This makes the subjects even more receptive.
3. Narrative form involves them with the action and emotionally manipulates them.
These movies have a beginning - middle - end.
4. Audience identifies with stars, characters, story lines, and situations.

IV. Become Part of the Movie
"It's Only A Movie."
But film making techniques psychologically transport you into the world of the film
Supplemental Web Sites
There are thousands of excellent websites. Over the course of the semester, we'll tell you of some specific ones to visit. But for now, here's a "little" list of quality film sites:

24fps - Projections on Film

99 Lives: The Video Magazine

AFI's 100 YEARS...100 MOVIES

American Film Institute

American Society of Cinematographers

"Animation Journal" Home Page

Black Film Center/Archive Home Page

Box Office Guru

Cinema History: Films from the Silent Era


Classic Films

Cyber Film School

Doug Stickney's Silver Screen Siren Website

Early Motion Pictures Home Page

Film & History

Film and Television

"Film Comment" magazine

"Film Culture" Magazine

Film Noir Reader

Film Scouts Home

Girls On Film

Hitoshi Doi's anime page

"Images": A Journal of Film and Popular Culture

Los Angeles Times MetaHollywood

Matt's Script Archive

Matinee Today - Film Art - Film Posters


Motion Picture Editors Guild Home Page

MovieLink | 777-FILM Online

Mutoscope & Biograph Co., Inc.

National Film Preservation Board of the Library of Congress, Home Page

Polish Cinema Database


Screen It

The Silent Film Web Group

Silent Movies

"The Astounding B Monster"

The British Film Institute

The Film 100

The Independent Film and Video Makers Internet Resource Guide

The Internet Movie Database

The Motion-Picture Industry: Behind-the-Scenes

The MSTed movie gallery: Jamie's Mystery Science Theater 3000 page

The Silent Film Bookshelf

The Silent Westerns

The Silents Majority

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