The Evolution of Film Essay example

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In the early times of narrative cinema there was litter pressure on the filmmakers for the evolution of film forms before nickelodeons (Salt, 31) as cinema had not become a mass cultural product and film was still just a novelty expected to die out like rock n roll. And so the demand was low and so the supply could remain unoriginal. Mary Jane's Mishap was made in 1903 when ‘multi-scene films were becoming popular’ (Salt, 32). Mary Jane's Mishap is notable for its use of experimental and inventive shot transitions. It used a vertical wipe to instead of ‘separate successive scenes’ (Salt, 32) (as it cuts to a shot width a wider frame of the same locale) but to change the zoom level. This frame is essentially an insert and borderline…show more content…
In big bold letter ‘PARRAFIN’ the flammable oil. Without this shot the viewer would be perplexed as to why she exploded and allows the narrative to flow as it could be water or any other fluid for all they know as cleverly Smith used this mise-en-scene to explain the narrative instead of an intertitle before the explosion which would have removed all suspense, tension and mystery especially after she moved to the cameras to show her gesturing a bright idea. Though this close-up could also be argued by Gunning of being of the cinema of attractions as ‘For a time [in cinema] close-ups were only used as an attraction to see an images but larger than life but ‘inciting visual curiosity’ (Gunning, pg 58) rather being evolutionary towards narrative cinema. The close-ups heighten the ‘only [tool they] they have at their disposal, a language of gestures’ (Burch, 224) musser idea

Mary Jane's Mishap combined the cinema of attraction trick film with the viewers want for narrative. ‘The decline in their [trick films] commercial importance was already evident by 1906’ (Salt, 40) Smith used a jump cut to create the illusion of Mary Jane exploding into smoke by subtracting her and adding smoke in the successive shot. He also uses superimposition to create a ghost liken creature. Like an avatar for its day. This shows narratives cinema still being influenced by the cinema of attractions as to make an entertaining film.
The acting
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