The Importance Of Preserving The Cinematic Experience
Industrial Scripts recently ran a fantastic opinion piece about the importance of the cinema. More specifically “What makes the cinema experience worthwhile?”
Personally, I believe going to the movies is an experience worth preserving. But I’m also a relatively new Dad and going to the movies isn’t as easy as it used to be. Having said that, there’s simply no better way to watch a movie than on the big screen. Many top filmmakers like Christopher Nolan are resilient to the evolving ‘On Demand’ lifestyle but, as the article states, it is a business. Even now big studios are exploring charging more for those who don’t want to venture to their local theater. Long ago, I used to produce short films and I completely understand why filmmakers would be frustrated if the cinematic experience is reduced in favor of more convenient streaming options. There’s still money to be made but at what artistic expense?
Industrial Scripts elaborates on the issue at a practical level as well:
“Without the expectations of delivering a cinema experience that can compete with the latest superhero or disaster film, there’s more freedom to experiment. At the same time, watching at home, some of that magic – the immersion, the community – is lost.” (Industrial Scripts)
There are creative advantages when producing low budget films but crafting a truly cinematic experience is why we all fell in love with the industry in the first place.
But again, I have to take my own thoughts into account. I can only speak to my own experience but going to the movies is pricey (when you’re a father) and it takes time. Time is a precious commodity now more than ever. I simply can’t make it to as many movies as I would like. In all honesty, I watch a lot of movies on the train to and from work. I’m guilty of going to the theater only when a big Marvel type movie arrives. Something truly ‘big’. I wish I had more time to watch the ‘smaller’ scale films but I can’t. I know it’s not the same experience when I see a movie as a rental at home but I’m still entertained. There really is no definitive stance to take in my case. I just watch what I can when time permits.
Streaming sites like Netflix have certainly changed the way we consume movies and television forever. That’s not where it ends either. More and more people are turning to YouTube for entertainment. Content creators are everywhere! But still, to me, nothing quite compares to a night at the movies.
So what makes the cinematic experience worthwhile? I suppose my official stance is that it’s ALWAYS worthwhile. There’s nothing like witnessing an artists vision the way it was intended to be seen. In the end, it’s not a simple yes or no answer. It’s really up to the individual to decide how much time and money they want/can invest in the cinematic experience. Especially given all the (admittedly) tempting options available everywhere outside cinemas.
What do you think? As an aspiring screenwriter, do you go out of your way to support films by going to the theater? Would you pay a premium to watch new releases in the comfort of your home?
Let me know in the comments below and don’t forget to check out more great articles on Industrial Scripts.