Monday, 4 May 2009

#34 The Cinematic Experience

We all go to the cinema. From young to old, we as a nation can’t help ourselves but go to escape from the harsh realities of everyday life. But what is it that makes us pay ridicules sums of money but not only for the ticket but also for the refreshments. Could it be that we are tired of society and need to escape to some of our wildest imaginations? However there’s definitely something that keeps us all going back for more in stead of waiting for the DVD release, but what could it be? In this I explore what the importance of cinema experience is and I ask the question ‘how important for audiences is the sensation offer by the cinema experience?’

What is the sensation of the cinema experience? The cinema sensation and experience is a wide range of things. From the beginning trailers and adverts on a big screen to the cliché popcorn that has become pop culture. I personally go to the cinema because I see the film industry as an art work, with every film-maker creating their very own ‘Mona Lisa’ to catch the lime light. With new technologies not only in the cinema but with the mise en scene and cinematography, it brings in new audiences to see the incredible sets and costumes that can only be see in the movies. However it is not the film alone that creates the experience. The other features such as surround sound and even the bigger screen contributes to the reason audiences choose to make the trip to there local multiplex or Arthouse cinema. That it’s self is one of the sensations of modern cinema.

I’m not sure about other peoples experience but this is a little taste of what me cinema experience is. Upon walking into a multiplex or a multiscreen anywhere, I look around only to be greeted by crowds of people who are all waiting for their tickets to the latest blockbuster. Whilst I’d like to just see the latest independent film. I stroll over to the back of the obnoxious line, idly looking at the latest movie poster and watching trailers on a small screen. After I have reached the ticket desk and have paid half my hard earned money (sorry I couldn’t say that with a straight face), on my ticket. I glance over to my watch and see I have a limited time and quickly head over to the refreshments section and pay even more for a medium size box of popcorn. Now I am ready to sit down for a couple of hours and be entertained. After the coughing the kid kicking my chair and several people talking thought the film I walk out and head home. If I am with company then I will discuss it on the trip home nit picking at all the good and bad things.

On the contrary there are some negatives that contribute to the overall sensation of the cinema. Something that really is a disadvantage at cinemas in the UK is the people you are sitting with for the duration of the film. Manly in multiplexes you get a lot of unappreciative audience members, who discard others in the audience and are persistent on talking and giggling between themselves. Also it’s a cliché that you get the coughers to your side, the kid behind you kicking the back of your chair and finally to complete it is the person in front of you that must have been the tallest in his class.

I asked a friend what he thought of the whole-film going experience. Firstly, my friend is not like me in the respect that he is not an eager movie goer like myself, however he does have his moments. Anyway, I was curious of why a non-film fanatic would make the trip instead of just waiting for the DVD release. Of the very short interview we had, he used the words, viewing with friends, popcorn, sticky people, picture quality and exiting. Most of the words used, didn’t relate exactly to the cinema,
Oliver Hunt 2

on the other hand I sort of got the joist of it. He even added a interesting point such as “everyone has a similar goal”, which is indeed an interesting point to make but what goal is that? Could it be to find out if the protagonist ends up living happily ever after?

Could it be that the cinema sensation is over rated? That we only go because we are moulded by society to believe that the cinema experience is the best way to view films? However maybe all the negatives are subconsciously seen in a sort of comforting thing, as if you were a home you know what to expect? Because why couldn’t the DVD experience be the new cinema experience? With HD DVD and Blue Ray DVDs on sale and surround sound with massive TV screens the audience and truly enjoy the cinetography of a film. But that wouldn’t be the cinematic experience we grew up in, it would be like not going to war because you can play it on a video game.

Something that has attracted audiences to cinema screens around the world is the new technologies with the film going experiences. For example the first permanent IMAX cinema was set up in
Toronto at Ontario Place in 1971 and is still in use. With IMAX and 3D cinemas popping up around the country it is incising new audiences because it truly is a different experience to a normal multiscreen because of the high quality and even images that come out of the screen. This appeals to kids more the adults because they can watch all there favorite characters like Shrek in 3D and have the image come out at them. A lot of big name directors such as James Cameron and Tim Burton are now preparing to make the jump to 3D cinema. However the main thing with film technology is where you see the film. In a less wealth country they might show films on projectors on a wall outside instead of in a big dark room, but still it attracts audiences.

Maybe going to the cinema is such a big thing around the world because we go with friends and family to be entertained. The reason we enjoy it is the experience of it. The popcorn and cup of Pepsi, the small chairs, the annoying people who talk all the way through and the trailers at the beginning that look fantastic on a massive screen instead of a ordinary computer screen. I think the sensation that keeps attracting more and more people is the excitement of the film, if it is a action the surround sound and the big screen make the audience feel as if there are on the battle field. If it a romantic flick then the audience forgets that they them self’s are alone on valentines day. Cinema controls audiences emotions by fazing out everything else, and I believe that is the sensation of why people go to the cinema because at home the phone rings the door bell goes and it breaks the concentration.
Oliver Hunt

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