Entertainment: Motion Pictures 1900-1940

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Picture, but no sound. Words like bang,boom and pow appear on the screen. This was the introduction to the ever popular motion pictures. The movies may have started out as nothing but between 1900 and 1940 the world of motion pictures flourished and matured into the greatest form of entertainment known.

Photographing was beginning to catch the interest of the world during the late 19th century. Experiments in photographing movement had been made in both the United States and Europe. These countries were not trying to exploit their technological and commercial possibilities. “The first motion pictures made with a single camera were by E. J. Marey, a French physician, in the 1880s, in the course of his study of motion. Marey's inventions regarding what came to be motion picture cameras and projectors, which he used to supplant the inadequacies of human vision, helped establish the narrative cinema, the cinema of illusion and storytelling” (History of motion pictures 1).

The Frenchman Louis Lumiere is often credited as inventing the first motion picture camera in 1895. But in truth, several others had made similar inventions around the same time as Lumiere. What Lumiere invented was a portable motion-picture camera, film processing unit and projector called the Cinematographe, three functions covered in one invention. In 1895, Lumiere and his brother were the first to present projected, moving, photographic, pictures to a paying audience of more that one person. ( History of the Motion Pictures 1).

In 1889 Thomas Edison and his staff developed the kinetograph, a camera using rolls of coated celluloid film, and the Kinetoscope, a device for peep-show viewing using photographs that flipped in sequence.(History of the Motion Pictures 2) . The Kinetoscope became popular in many arcades. Experimentation developed ways in which moving images might be shown to more than one person at a time. The zoopraxiscope was the first machine that was patented in the United...
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