A movie, also known as a motion picture, digital movie or independent film, is an artistic work of visual art employing images to simulate daily experiences which convey ideas, stories, emotions, beauty, or environment through the means of moving pictures. Although most movies are meant to entertain, a few are created for educational purposes. Movies can be created from a range of media including video games, comic books, real photographs and computer graphics.
A motion picture is made by capturing an image on a large display screen, usually using film or another type of media, and then projecting it in a special way so that other elements like sound and special effects appear clearly. The process of creating a motion picture has changed quite extensively over the years; today digital technology is the most commonly utilized technique. Most theaters use traditional film methods, while a few have gone completely digital.
While motion pictures were largely confined to major theaters, home entertainment systems have allowed movies to reach a much wider audience. DVD players have also given the public access to favorite films. As the technology used in making a motion picture improves, the cost of producing them decreases. As a result, more movies are made available to the public at low or no cost through online rentals.
In our daily lives, we generally associate a movie with its title, the word “movies” itself and perhaps some expression like “cool”. Most people readily remember the first name of a movie that they have seen, even if they have forgotten the full title or even how it was advertised (i.e., “starring Jack Nicholson”). We do not, however, associate words such as “motion pictures” with these popular leisure activities. Movies have come a long way since their humble beginnings in vaudeville theaters. Their transformation into an art form has occurred mainly due to advancements in film technology.
One of the most common images found in a motion picture is dialogue. The spoken word is oftentimes inserted between the pictures and television screens. Though the process of inserting a shot of a person speaking can often be attributed to a poor lighting situation, the human voice is almost always present. The use of an actual human voice is considered to be one of the strongest forms of screenwriting. The utilization of a monotone, which refers to the ability to speak with only one or two words, is considered to be a detriment to the quality of motion pictures.
Silent films, which utilized only black and white for images and sounds, had a greater impact on the development of the motion picture industry than any other single factor. A notable early example of a silent film is The Great Train Robbery, which was completed and released in 1926. Though it was not exactly a comedy, it was a bold experiment in non-speaking visual images. These early movies offer intriguing insights into the evolution of the motion picture industry, and are often necessary viewing for film fans.