I weep…

Paramount-2014Paramount just announced they are going to stop distributing film as film, they are going all digital, as of… NOW. The first studio to jettison an art form of a hundred years standing. I weep. And not because I have hideous allergies that require two forms of eye drops and antihistamines, I weep for lost beauty. There is nothing like FILM.

26 Comments »

  1. Would that be film, or fillum? Kidding aside, like the LED light bulb, they have some work to do to get this right. Compact fluorescents, anyone? It’s all about the light, the quality of the light, the subtlety. Technicolor Kodachrome grain pixels and the cloud. Glass acetate plastic and a SIM card. The second coming of three D. A fevered dream of Harpo’s harp and Chico’s piano swirling around Dooley Wilson, and Stanley waiting for a streetcar. Clang clang went the Tin Man. And your little dog, too. If you let anything happen to him, you’ll never wag that tail again. Good night Gracie.

    • I think you’ve hit the nail on the head, David. It doesn’t look right, and instead of developing the medium to a point where it does have the latitude, depth, and mystery of film, they just gone immediately for what is cheaper.

  2. You are a bearer of bad news. I remember when the world went digital and stopped using SLR cameras. Fifteen years later, I still miss processing my film in the darkroom. Will this be how we all feel about film at the movies? I’ve just recently fell in love with vinyl records again. After a 30 year hiatus. So it will be with film in movies. A nostalgic “I remember when”. I’ll be waiting for the revival.

  3. As a photographer for the past 54 years, I still miss film, very much. You were a better photographer because you had to get it right on film, no two ways about. The chrome photographers were even better, they had to get it perfect!!! Those were the days my friend, those were the days.

    • I was at a photo shoot not long ago and with the shutter going off in fully automated mode, and the photographer generating thousands of images, I wondered where the innate eye was, and the wisdom of self-editing… Cheers to you for being trained old school!

  4. When I read this I got so depressed even though I knew it was coming. For me the thing with film is that it is ALIVE, there’s a texture, a tactility, a – as I say – *Life* to it, it *breathes*. The buzzword of the past ten years or so is “real” but that’s always seemed to me an odd aim, and the notion that HD and digital is more “real” with all its “color grading” nonsense and its 1s and 0s is demonstrably fallacious. Look at the works of painters from Rembrandt to Millais to Monet, is their work *entirely* “real”? No. Is it beautiful? Yes. It’s the same with film and technicolor or what have you. There’s a Beauty, a richness, an artistry with film that digital for all its “gosh- wow!” factor doesn’t have. To digress it’s worth noting the most irritating gimmick of recent years, one that has plagued cinema – and television – all in the name of “realism”, the “shakycam”, washed-out look, consciously poor shifting framing and sudden-zoom-and-refocus-for-NO-REASON, while a variant this was a deliberate and effective artistic choice in the early seasons of Homicide it’s a pointless abomination when used in movies and shows that aren’t even a little faux documentary in approach; it’s done because others do it and because it carries with it the illusory notion of realism, in which case presumably Chinatown would have looked better shot on a cameraphone. (see the films of Robert Altman for someone who *really knew what he was doing with a febrile shooting style*) Digression ends!
    The switch to digital isn’t occuring because it’s *better* in all ways but merely – as you so rightly say Vickie – because it’s cheap and *because, god forbid, any thought be given to the medium*. Isn’t about “progress”, it’s about “groupthink” but thankfully as this thread shows not everyone’s a sucker! 🙂

  5. I like both digital and film for different reasons. That being said, I do miss the feel of film and don’t wish it to disappear altogether.

    I remember watching The Shawshank Redemption last year and noticing, really for the first time, the difference between digital and film. Shawshank was rough and it had more flaws. Digital is shiny. Digital is a bright, white I-Pod. Now, I like shiny, and I like shiny. But if rough goes away, we’ve lost a certain texture and are left with one less option to help tell a story. With growing technologies, we should be giving ourselves more options. Not less.

    This may not sadden me as much as others, but it still makes me frown.

  6. Reblogged this on The Artistic Packrat and commented:
    I like both digital and film for different reasons.That being said, I do miss the feel of film and don’t wish it to disapear altogether.

    I remember watching The Shawshank Redemption last year and noticing, really for the first time, the difference between digital and film. Shawshank was more rough and it had more flaws. Digital is shiny. Digital is a bright, white perfect I-Pod. Now, I like shiny and I like rough. But if rough goes away, we’ve lost a certain texture and are left with one less tool to help tell a story. With growing technologies, we should be giving ourselves more options. Not less.

    This may not sadden me as much as others, but it still makes me frown.

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