Movie Reviews


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Movies are films that are devoted exclusively to narrate some stories in front of large audience. Films include private films, as well as documentaries, newsreels, advertisement clippings etc. These are also meant for larger audience. However, documentaries are made to be informative or provoke thoughts. Newsreels report facts. Both are shorter in length than an average film. Many documentary filmmakers have taken cues from moviemakers and started narrating their subject in story format. However, it is somebody in the background who narrates these stories. Unlike documentaries, art films have the actors talking in them. Newsreels on the other hand use somebody a reporter in front to discuss the recording. Commercials are essentially for advertising some product, highlighting something about it generally with the help of some signature tune and some celebrity may endorse the product.

The first ever piece of film was recorded in 1888, by Louis Le Prince. >From there, filmmaking progressed into story telling. But the first films did not have any sound! Even with this drawback, it was a popular form of entertainment. Popular movies of silent era include The Birth of a Nation (1915), The Ten Commandments (1923), The Big Parade (1925), The Gold Rush (1925), Ben-Hur (1925), etc. In the meanwhile, attempts were being made throughout that period by scientists like Thomas Alva Edison to link sound to the film. It was in 1927 that the talkies became a reality and first successful talkie was The Jazz Singer, which was made in 1927. Perfection in synchronization between action and sound came much later. In this context, it may surprise many that Charlie Chaplin’s films in 1930s were not made in silent era. They were deliberately made in that format.

Technology, of course, contributed to making movies more and more interesting. It also made movies more affordable, and easier to produce. Therefore, a larger section of the population was now able to watch movies more frequently. Simple film reels, progressed into videos, and then moved into the compact discs, as we know today. Even sound recording techniques underwent dramatic changes becoming clearer than ever before. Because of these developments, movies evolved to cater to the needs of a wider section of the society and politics. Today, we have a larger variety of movies than what people in silent era enjoyed. There are mythological, historical, comedies, musical, tragedies, crime scene investigations, mysteries, action, scientific fiction, and fantasies to choose from.

Actors became increasingly important part of films because they had to succeed in creating the emotion in the storyline and the audience had to identify with it. People started idolizing the actors, who were and are always made up just like the drama artists. Drama artists had a different way of communicating with the audience, and it was louder. In movies a subtler way of expression was required. Since sound was no longer an issue, dialogues took over, and this was assisted by the way the actor talked, walked, and behaved. Soon the actors’ screen lives and personal lives became blurred, and many lived in misery for their fame.

It was the producers and directors who were laughing all the way to the bank. Directors were able to order actors about, and actors, however famous, did their biding. Famous directors include Alfred Hitchcock, who also produced his films, Francis Ford Copola who directed The Godfather. There were people like Robert Wise as well, who directed all time favorites like The Sound of Music. Many of these filmmakers took on multiple roles such as directing and writing screenplay, or directing and producing, as it gave them greater freedom for expressing their creativity. Steven Spielberg is one such director, screen play writer, and producer in contemporary times.

As movies grew in popularity like insurance advertising online has done in recent years, so did the money inflow. Popular films like Harry Potter And The Half Blood Prince have grossed as much as $58.18 million only in part of the country. Steven Spielberg, and George Lucas combination churns out movies that earn a lot for the producers. The function of distribution has also come into picture. The distributor organizes the distribution of limited copies amongst various exhibition houses or theaters. Everybody makes money, including the journalist who writes about the movies.

As the number of movies increased, there emerged a need to ensure that quality survived. And therefore, Academy Awards were institute by the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science. These awards are better known as Oscars. The first such awards were given in 1928. Over the period, many new categories have been added, and excellence in foreign films is also recognized.

Television serials also narrate story and are of much shorter duration. They are like smaller movies. However, there are a few major differences between the television serials and the movies, apart from length of course. In regular movies, the story revolves around the central characters. Unlike it, the television serial gives considerable importance to other characters as well. Moreover, the objective is to bring the person watching the serial before the television screen the following day as well. So each episode ends in a way that makes the person want to know what will happen on the next day. This is perhaps something the television serial makers learnt from the story of Shahryar and his wife Scheherazade, of the Arabian Nights.

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