Deprecated: Function split() is deprecated in /home/jmyers26/public_html/textpattern/lib/txplib_misc.php(653) : eval()'d code on line 401
Deliberatepixel / tag

Film Myth and Truth

Did French theater patrons a hundred years ago really duck and hide under their seats when first faced with the footage of a train rolling towards them? Was The Jazz Singer really the first film with sound? Is Citizen Kane in fact better than any other movie ever made? Michael Z. Newman takes on these and other film legends, and the way film historians and journalists have misused them.

Great article - but I'll admit it's difficult to let go of such stories. Part of the attraction of film for me is its mythological capacity, and moviemakers themselves often love creating or reinforcing myths about moviemaking. After all, Singin' in the Rain probably did more to establish the legend of The Jazz Singer as an one-note revolution instead of the culmination of a long process of small steps than any historian or journalist ever could. All of the folklore about films are all stories about the power of cinema, and for those who love cinema, they're the stories we want to believe.

On Myth

Marina Warner:

Writers don’t make up myths; they take them over and recast them. Even Homer was telling stories that his audience already knew. If some individuals present weren’t acquainted with Odysseus’s wanderings or the Trojan War, and were listening in for the first time (as I was when a child, enthralled by the gods and goddesses in H.A. Guerber’s classic retelling), they were still aware that this was a common inheritance that belonged to everyone. Its single author – if Homer was one at all – acted as a conduit of collective knowledge, picking up the thread and telling it anew.

Ghosts, Vampires and Zombies

A couple of physicists totally take all the fun out of ghoulish Halloween myths by detailing the science behind them.

Honestly, though, it's pretty interesting to see how these legends might have evolved and how our own beliefs sustain them - despite all evidence to the contrary.