Lumiere and the cinematographe

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Data:07.01.2008
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Testo

1895 and Lumiere Brothers’ first films

At No 14 of Boulevard des Capucines, into the basement of the Grand Cafe, between the walls of a room called “Indian Salon”, a small crowd of guests experiences the general proof of the first page of history of Cinema, officially written in the evening of that day: the first public projection. With a little price for ticket, the projection offers 12 films and opens with "The sortie des usines Lumiere", a brief shot of the Lumière workers leaving the factory.
Something had changed from the usually daily routine, cinema was born.
The foundations of cinema
The cinematograph and Thomas Edison
In 1893 Thomas Edison patented The “Cinetograph” (a device that records images, but merely provide a projection of poor quality), and then the "Kinetoscope", a viewer that allows only an individual projection.
The films were made in celluloid nitrate, a highly flammable material, and were made in the United States.
A refinement of paramount importance was certainly the application of the principle of intermittent progress, inside the apparatus baptized "Choreutoscopes".
Made and catalogued by Molteni, with a form of a disc of glass, with intermittent rotary motion device according to a "Cross of Malta", at 6 notches. This in turn operated a wheel on which was mounted a shutter intended to mask the projection during the transition from 1 frame to the next.
The cinetograph found its ideal placement in the "penny arcades", in fairs and country festivals but only on 28th December 1895 It was baptized gaining increasingly reputation, the age of the viewer had ended.

The lumière brothers, using the idea of Edison, found a success out of the ordinary despite the apparatus could project sequentially only 45 frames per second, in a few days the two brothers will be forced to organize even 10 projections daily on the contrary of the first evening where the viewers did not exceed the thirty, with a collection of 2,500 francs.
The new ingredient in Lumière brothers: The mute film and the Silent era
A silent film is a film without the sound.
The first public screenings were presented and accepted as "curiosities" in the intervals between the different numbers of vaudeville, a theatrical genre very popular during the nineteenth century.
The idea of combining image and sound is old almost as Cinema, but we’ll have to wait for decades in order to see an actor who speaks.
Actually the films were not entirely "dumb" was custom accompanying screenings with live music, from the great theatre of the city to which of the suburbs; usually a pianist or an organist, or even an orchestra for the theatres that could allow, served as a soundtrack.
Among the scholars of the seventh art, the period preceding the advent of sound in cinema, is indicated as the silent era. During this period, the cinematography was able to achieve high levels of quality, so we have to wait a few years since the introduction of new technology in order to equal It(and then to improve) the quality of silent films.
"Sortie des ouvries de l'usine Lumière"
Workers Leaving the Lumiere Factory
Lyons. Saint Victor Lane No. 25, here there’s the seat of Lumiere’s company, specialized in plates and photo paper. The camera is fixed to a door that opens and from which workers leaving direct to their homes. There are Men, women, dogs, bicycles, horses and a luxury car that is transporting Antoine Lumiere and his son Auguste.
The characters are a large group of workers, mostly women, in clothing typical of the Belle Époque, out of a building, as if they had just finished their day into the factory. This “film” is often mentioned as the first documentary in history, an honour disowned by lots of modern researchers, who have suggested that It is only one of many "trials" of shot made the same day by Lumière.
They think that It isn’t a real documentary because there are lots of question, concerning this film, without answers:
•Knowing that they would be shot, the workers dressed their really working clothes or not?
• Workers leaving the left to right and vice versa (this suggests that the way to take is shown them).
• No one walks towards the camera.
• A car driven by two horses represents the grand finale, something unusual to be seen near a factory.
It is the dawn of cinema; this is the first official act that testifies its birth: a cold documentary but necessary that allowed the Lumière’s family to see the efforts done during the previous years in order to invent the cinematograph. Thanks to this singular shooting, then projected privately in Paris, in front of the representatives of the Societe d'Encouragement pour l'Industrie Nationale, the custodians of the patent obtained that were financed 20 reproductions of the same machine. It is the first model of Cinema, intended as a representation of reality without any manipulation narrative.
The importance of this film is not only in its relationship with the history of Cinema, but in the principle of “spectacularisation” arriving at factories, passing through trains (arrivé ed'un train à la Gare de la Ciotat shot in the same year) and economic and social developments of the new century.
From Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory came us just two frames, but there are other versions of the same type of shooting, set in other times of the year, indicating a theory that would this work as a result of extensive staging rather than the reality imprinted on the film.

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