Film is No Longer Film

By  |  Friday, October 14, 2011 at 4:14 am

Salon’s Matt Zoller Seitz reports on yet another analog artifact that’s given way to a digital substitute: Movie cameras.

Theaters, movies, moviegoing and other core components of what we once called “cinema” persist, and may endure. But they’re not quite what they were in the analog cinema era. They’re something new, or something else — the next generation of technologies and rituals that had changed shockingly little between 1895 and the early aughts. We knew this day would come. Calling oneself a “film director” or “film editor” or “film buff” or a “film critic” has over the last decade started to seem a faintly nostalgic affectation; decades hence it may start to seem fanciful. It’s a vestigial word that increasingly refers to something that does not actually exist — rather like referring to the mass media as “the press.”

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3 Comments For This Post

  1. ahow628 Says:

    Meh. There are tons of these around. Dialing a phone? I don't see a dial any more. Turning on a light? There is no longer a knob that extends the wick of a oil lantern. Taping a show? Probably not on a tape. They are just colloquialisms at this point.

  2. The_Heraclitus Says:

    Exactly. No ones stops and thinks about this when saying it. We "drive" a car. Well, "drive" is what you did with animals pulling wagons, et al. We STILL use the term.

  3. pcd2k Says:

    Sure is a thorny one. Film and its meaning is one of those terms that in reality speaks from its origins and tends to bespoke a refined sense of historical meaning for those who use it. But until the higher places of learning decide differently, Film schools, universities, government and funding bodies will likely perpetuate its usage, disregardless whether its true meaning is worthless.