“Film Theory for the Digital World: Connecting the Masters to the New Digital Cinema” by Berton Jr.

  • ©John Andrew Berton Jr.




    Film Theory for the Digital World: Connecting the Masters to the New Digital Cinema



    This article examines the role that theories of photographic cinema play in the criticism of digital cinema. The theories of Georges Melies, Vachel Lindsay, Lev Kuleshov, Andre Bazin and Rudolf Arnheim-critics, theoreticians and filmmakers, the key-stones of this work-have proven pertinent to the advancing technology of other cinematic forms. Their ideas have applicability to specific aspects of digital cinema, including the manipulation of illusory space, discrete and explicit control of cinematic elements, the transformation of world spaces into screen space and the role of realistic imagery in determining the content of a cinematic work. Parallels can be drawn between the ideas of these theorists, most of whom wrote during the infancy of photographic cinema, on the developing state of film and that of current digital cinema.


    Dale Peterson, Genesis II: Creation and Recreation with Computers (Reston, VA: Reston Publishing, 1983) pp. 43 60.
    Vachel Lindsay, The Art of the Moving Picture
    (Norwood, MA: Norwood Press, 1922) p. 114.
    Lindsay [2] p. 116.
    Lindsay [2] pp. 118-119.
    Lindsay [2] p. 119.
    Lindsay [2] p. 133.
    Lindsay [2] p. 133.
    Lewis Jacobs, ed., The Emergence of Film Art (New York: Hopkinson and Blake, 1969) p. 10.
    Jacobs [8] p. 19.
    Lev Kuleshov, Kuleshov on Film (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1974) p. 58.
    Kuleshov [10] p. 63.
    Kuleshov [10] p. 193.
    Siegfried Kracauer, Theory of Film: The Redemption of Physical Reality. (London: Oxford Univ. Press, 1960).
    André Bazin, What is Cinema?, 2 vols. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1971).
    Rudolf Arnheim, Film as Art (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1957) p. 9.
    Arnheim [15] p. 35.
    Arnheim [15] pp. 59-60.
    Arnheim [ 15] p. 5.

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