Early American Cinema in Transition: Story, Style, and Filmmaking, 1907–1913

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Univ of Wisconsin Press, Dec 3, 2001 - Performing Arts - 306 pages
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The period 1907–1913 marks a crucial transitional moment in American cinema. As moving picture shows changed from mere novelty to an increasingly popular entertainment, fledgling studios responded with longer running times and more complex storytelling. A growing trade press and changing production procedures also influenced filmmaking. In Early American Cinema in Transition, Charlie Keil looks at a broad cross-section of fiction films to examine the formal changes in cinema of this period and the ways that filmmakers developed narrative techniques to suit the fifteen-minute, one-reel format.
    Keil outlines the kinds of narratives that proved most suitable for a single reel’s duration, the particular demands that time and space exerted on this early form of film narration, and the ways filmmakers employed the unique features of a primarily visual medium to craft stories that would appeal to an audience numbering in the millions. He underscores his analysis with a detailed look at six films: The Boy Detective; The Forgotten Watch; Rose O’Salem-Town; Cupid’s Monkey Wrench; Belle Boyd, A Confederate Spy; and Suspense.

 

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Early American cinema in transition: story, style, and filmmaking, 1907-1913

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Keil (cinema studies & history, Univ. of Toronto) examines early American silent cinema in terms of narrative, showing how narrative film techniques evolved in terms of length, complexity, and ... Read full review

Contents

Introduction
3
Boom Time in the MovingPicture Business Industrial Structure Production Practices and the Trade Press
20
A Story Vital and Unified in Its Action The Demands of Narrative
45
An Immeasurably Greater Freedom Time and Space in Transitional Cinema
83
The Modern Technique of the Art The Style of Transitional Cinema
125
Analyzing Transition Six Sample Films
175
Conclusion
205
Note on Method
217
ShotbyShot Analyses for Chapter 6
220
Notes
236
Viewed Titles 19071913
270
Works Cited
287
Film Index
296
General Index
301
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Encyclopedia of Early Cinema
Richard Abel
No preview available - 2004
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