Early Hollywood Studios and the Coming of Sound
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Buster Keaton - The Scarecrow

This's very funny short comedy with Buster Keaton and Edward F. Cline.

Leading up to the coming of sound in films, film audiences were fascinated and entertained by the genre of silent slapstick. Silent slapstick films featured stars like Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton. How would these films contrast to today's comedic films? Would today's film audiences be as entertained by silent actions and expressions as audiences were in the 1920's?

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W.C. Fields in "It's A Gift" - Blind Man with Cane

The coming of sound also caused a shift in comedy from the silent slapstick to the verbal comedy. Notice how there are still elements of the slaptick era in this clip, with the breaking of the glass in the front door of the shop and the blind man falling over the boxes. These films differ from their slapstick predecessors in that they incorporate the verbal comedy as the main source of entertainment for the audience.

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Steamboat Willie - 1928

Here we have Walt Disney's first sound picture and the claim to fame of America's favorite cartoon character, Mickey Mouse. Notice how this use of sound helps to animate and personify some of the inamimate objects, like the boat whistles for instance.

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The Ten Commandments(1956) behind the scenes of parting the red sea

Religion has always been an important part of culture and inspired artists to create great works. The desire to present one's God as miraculous and powerful may have called for the development of greater techniques. In this video they show how the visual special effects were created for the parting of the red sea scene using a number  matte paintings. If more than one matte painting is used then it is called a traveling matte

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Taking Out the T-1000 | Terminator 2: Judgment Day | Classic Clips

The CGI effects used in Terminator 2 gave the audience a visual that they had never quite seen before. We can consider early science fiction robot films like Forbidden Planet and examine how they potrayed robots back in the 50's and see the influence that those films had on more contemporary ones like the Terminator franchise, notwithstanding Arnold Schwarzenegger's acting. All that's different now is that we have the technology to create "cooler" effects like the liquid metal of the T-1000. Films like these show how Hollywood started to put the special effects of a movie almost on equal standing with the plot, in some cases even more so.

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Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

The late 70s and early 80s also gave birth to one of the most influential film franchises of all time. Star Wars was groundbreaking in the visuals of a futuristic galaxy, with space travel, hologram messages, robots, lightsabers, and who could forget the wookies. This film is a great bridge in between older science fiction films like Forbidden Planet and more recent ones like the Terminator franchise.  

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The Lost World 1925

Enthusiasm for dinosaurs in the early 1900's inspired the incorporation for the animals in film. Stop motion animation in was used in this 1925 film. This early film was less fluid, lacked color, and castantly had to switch from human actors back to animiated characters. Skip to 35:04

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3D Movie Firsts

3D Movie Firsts | Early Hollywood Studios and the Coming of Sound | Scoop.it

Here's an article with more interesting facts about the history of 3D in films.

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Movie Musings: Is cinema making a spectacle of itself?

Movie Musings: Is cinema making a spectacle of itself? | Early Hollywood Studios and the Coming of Sound | Scoop.it
By Kezia Tooby Tom Gunning coined the term ‘the cinema of attractions’ in his 1986 essay ‘The Cinema of Attractions, Early Film, its Spectator and the Avant-Garde’.
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Reveal Trailer - Official Call of Duty: Black Ops 2

We can even look at today's video games and see how they've been influenced by the technology affecting film. It's at the point where these video games are looking more and more like movies. Notice how these contemporary games, especially the war games, use different camera angles to provide the viewers with dynamics in the video game's visuals.

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Avatar: An IMAX 3D Experience Trailer

Avatar was one of the most anticipated films in the last decade due to the technology used to create James Cameron's vision. The 3D imaging techniques used to create this movie was considered at the time to be a cinematic breakthrough. The visual effects used to create this film were groundbreaking. New motion-capture animation technologies almost makes the audience forget that it isn't live action. This is great example of some of the of the modern day spectacles in Hollywood. The uses of CGI and 3D technology is now the main focal point to sell films. We pay an extra $4 for IMAX and 3D movies that make us go "oooh" and "ahhh" throughout the whole movie.

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"THE JAZZ SINGER" with AL JOLSON ~~ COFFEE DAN'S ~ LIVE 1927

"The opening live musical sequence with Al Jolson. The vitaphone was turned on and Jolson sings and speaks live!!" A clip from The Jazz Singer, the first live-action film with sound. A 1927 American musical film, its release heralded the commercial ascendance of the "talkies" and the decline of the silent film era. Produced by Warner Bros. with its Vitaphone sound-on-disc system, the movie stars Al Jolson, who performs six songs. The use of these early sound technologies experienced troubles with synchronization and amplification. Notice how this film uses the sound as a means to drive the plot of the movie, in contrast to the silent-era films where the expressions and movement of the actors did that job.

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Doctor X (1932)

Dr.X.Classic 1930's horror in early colour starring Lionel Atwill and the beautiful Fay Wray.Directed by Michael Curtiz.From the vault of Orac!

 

At this time we have films moving away from black and white and into color. Doctor X is one of the last films to be made in the two-color Technicolor process. Notice in the scene in the library, our eyes are drawn to the woman's green dress, this is because the green contrasts the sepia background colors. The audiences were at the time able to start seeing these vibrant colors in films.

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Sound Stage - The History of Motion Picture Sound

Sound Stage - The History of Motion Picture Sound | Early Hollywood Studios and the Coming of Sound | Scoop.it

Here you will find another story of sound in motion pictures.

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FORBIDDEN PLANET Outtakes + Deleted Scenes - pt 1 of 2!

Space Race influenced Hollywood by inspiring the Science Fiction Boom in the 1950s. Special effects were used to create the illusion of space travel. Often these illusions were created using already established techniques. This is an example of a matte. Mattes were originally used in theatre but improved upon for uses in film. They combined 2 or more image elements in a single image. Another interesting thing about the images is if you notice how the films uses very vibrant colors to allow the audience to experience the same feelings of awe right along with the charaters as they reach a new world. Also, if you get a chance to watch the full movie, compare the visuals of space and the inside of the spacecraft with more famous space odysseys like Star Wars, and Star Trek and see how this film may have been an influence of these stories. 

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Nightmare Before Christmas - What's This? - English

Growing popularity of gothic culture in the 1980's and 90's may have contributed to the acceptance and success of this film. It is also an example of how Hollywood continously improves upon older techniques. Stop motion technique for 1993 film

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A Short History Of 3D Part 1 (2006)

A look at how 3D films work, the era of classic dimensional movies from the 50s and the resurgence of new 3D films that all started with the showing of "The ...

Here we have a brief commentary on the history of 3D films, starting with the first 3D projects pre-1950s into the boom of 3D with films like Bwana Devil, House of Wax, and The Creature From the Black Lagoon. Here's another case of how technology in Hollywood can be influential in what movies are popular.

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Movies and Film: A Brief History of Sound in Movies — Infoplease.com

Movies and Film: A Brief History of Sound in Movies — Infoplease.com | Early Hollywood Studios and the Coming of Sound | Scoop.it

Here is a brief article on the history of sound on film. You will see that early film makers had trouble synchronizing their sound with the film.

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King Kong (1933) - colorized

Another famous Hollywood film. This version of the film is another great example of how technology affects how we as an audience watch movies. This movie was originally released in 1933, however in 1989 it was colorized using the tech of that time period and re-released.

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Titanic 3D trailer

One of the most well known and highest grossing films in history is without a doubt Titanic. Filmmakers use the advanced technology that didn't exist in 1997 to digitally remaster and add 3D/IMAX to the movie and re-release it in theaters. 

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The End Scene of Doom.

And here's a movie based on a video game, sort of the reverse of what we see these days. The ending scene of the movie pays homage to the classic video game by filming the scene in a "first person shooter perspective." 

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