The Orientation of Future Cinema: Technology, Aesthetics, Spectacle

Author(s): Bruce Isaacs


What is the fate of cinema in an age of new technologies, new aesthetic styles, new modes of cultural production and consumption? What becomes of cinema and a century-long history of the moving image when the theatre is outmoded as a social and aesthetic space, as celluloid gives over to digital technology, as the art-house and multiplex are overtaken by a proliferation of home entertainment systems? The Orientation of Future Cinema offers an ambitious and compelling argument for the continued life of cinema as image, narrative and experience. Commencing with Lumiere's Arrival of a Train at a Station, Bruce Isaacs confronts the threat of contemporary digital technologies and processes by returning to cinema's complex history as a technological and industrial phenomenon. The technology of moving images has profoundly changed; and yet cinema materialises ever more forcefully in digital capture and augmentation, 3-D perception and affect, High Frame Rate cinema, and the evolution of spectacle as the dominant aesthetic mode in contemporary studio production.


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An ambitious and highly original analysis of the terrain of contemporary and future film theory, production and practice.

Bruce Isaacs is a Lecturer in Film Studies at the University of Sydney, Australia. He has published widely on film history and theory.

Part 1: The Age of Late Cinema Chapter 1: What is Cinema? Chapter 2: The Question of Cinema Art: The Legitimacy of Film Style Chapter 3: The Effect of the Screen - The Synthetic Narrative - The Synthetic Image Part 2: High Concept Cinema: Image, Effect, Spectacle Chapter 4: Historicizing Concept Cinema: A Crisis in the Image Chapter 5: The Industrial Context of High Concept Production: Continuities and Discontinuities Chapter 6: Classical High Concept Aesthetics - A Case Study of Steven Spielberg and James Cameron - Incorporating Cinema: The Commoditization of the Image Part 3: Beyond Cinema: Reflections on a Future Chapter 7: New Technologies of the Image Chapter 8: The New Wave - Christopher Nolan - Michael Bay - Roland Emmerich Chapter 9: Future Modalities of the Image (The Paradox of High Concept 3-D Cinema) Chapter 10: The Orientation of Future Cinema

General Fields

  • : 9781441184221
  • : Continuum Publishing Corporation
  • : Continuum Publishing Corporation
  • : November 2012
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Bruce Isaacs
  • : Hardback
  • : 320