Cinema, Readings

Authorship and the changing narrative

The new hypertext and hypermedia narrative would not exist if there was no foundation of the print form. They are binary oppositions yet they exist because of each other. Due to the new interactive form we would “read” it differently.

Jay Bolter argues that there is no story just readings of it (different interpretations). However, the readings also make up the story but everyone person is likely to have a different one. ‘The story is the sum of all its readings’.

I wonder who is considered the author then or are there multiple ones? As Jay goes on to say ‘Each reading is a different turning within a universe of paths set up by the author’. Considering the reader now would has more control over the outcome of the material then the person who wrote it then does that make them an author as well? Also we would chose our desired order. However if we were able to physically add or change parts than that could bring us closer to be an author.

In Cinema class, we have been discussing authorship in films. It is hard to define but an auteur will have a distinct style to their film, like Hitchcock, Godard and many more.  There were critics who favored auteur directors and canonised them. I thought about this point of view but with authorship on the internet. Especially with sites such as wikipedia where almost anyone can edit the pages.

Relating back to my hit record post, the company is built on collaboration and that is at the core of how it works. Hit Record is built on people editing other people’s work. There is no one author even though Joseph Gordon-Levitt is the director of the projects. Would you say that we lose a distinct style with more collaboration projects or could the form be the style?


Steven Soderbergh on the State of Cinema

I watched this video of Steven Soderbergh take about his own view of where cinema is and how financing films in the industry is diminishing cinema and up coming talent.

Some of the points I took away:

The difference (and there is one) between cinema and movies

Cinema is something that is made, it’s unique. Basically if that filmmaker didn’t make it it wouldn’t exist in any other form. While on the other hand movies are just something you watch. A line that stuck with me was that not all movies are cinema however not all cinema are movies.

There are fewer executives who know movies and love movies. It’s profit driven while Soderbergh sees it as a talent driven business. That the directors matter more than the idea. You can have a great idea but if it’s not executed properly it won’t be great anymore. While great directors and up and coming directors will bring ideas with them.

You need to make about $120 million on a film to survive in this market. Roughly 30 million for mainstream, wide release and then another 30 million for overseas. On top of that the film distributors take half of what you make.

We NEED more people who are going to take risks and look past estimated profits. Or else the industry will become more and more narrow in what it produces.




A wake up call at 2:30pm on a Wednesday

The points that Adrian brought up in the “lecture” this week related back to what we discussed in my cinema class. Yes, the media industry is changing rapidly but it never hit me that the jobs that I might want in the future will no longer be there. Industries are collapsing and moving to ‘post industrial media ecologies’. It’s like everything is up in the air and we don’t know where it’s going to fall or who is going to catch the pieces.

I always aspired to be in the film industry but for most parts it’s still a very capital intensive and expensive industry. It will not be what it like today. In my cinema class, we discusses the types of films being released mainly fall under 2 major themes: young adult book adaptions franchises or super hero type movies. However, movie goers seem to be on the decrease and people prefer to watch it at home and on their own terms. Kevin Spacey talks at the Edinburgh International Television festival that we should give the control to the viewers, like what Netflicks has done. There is even less of a difference for viewers between TV and film because they are all just content now.

Christopher Nolan is still positive about the future of film. In his Wall Street Journal article released earlier this month “Films of the future will still draw people to theatres” he writes:

“Once movies can no longer be defined by technology, you unmask powerful fundamentals – the timelessness, the otherworldliness, the shared experience of these narratives.”

How is this going to happen? Technology must evolve and the movie going experience needs to be distinguished from home entertainment. Would this mean 4D and beyond move experiences? Or even grander theatres?

Christopher Nolan next film Interstellar has been described by Matthew McConaughey “by far the most ambitious film Mr. Nolan has ever directed.” It will interesting to see it when it comes out.