After reading the chapter from Lev Manovich on digital cinema, hybrid cinema seems to be the staple of today’s entertainment industry. As Manovich explains in the chapter, “In principle, given enough time and money, one can create what will be the ultimate digital film: 90 minutes, i.e. 129,600 frames, completely painted by hand from scratch, but indistinguishable in appearance from live photography” (pg. 9). This is exactly what comprises a great majority of cinema today such as: PIXAR movies, Marvel movies, STAR WARS movies, and many more franchises. Granted, some of the above films still use a great amount of traditional filming as the backbone of the work, but most of it will be touched digitally in the post-production process. It has transformed the way people make movies.
The “hybrid space” work I picked to study was the mash-up of the six STAR WARS movies on starwarswars.com. It was very interesting watching the first half hour of the piece as it displays all six films at the same time. The opening sequence seemed to really work as the combination of the films helped amplify what was on screen. However, once the movies progressed into different scenes, chaos ensued.
Each movie was digitally edited, or manipulated as Manovich states: “the essential characteristic of digital information is that it can be manipulated,” so that everything could become transparent between the films (pg. 10). For instance, because the movies were all transparent you could almost see all of them at the same time. Some scenes with higher contrast seemed to stand out better than other darker scenes, which blended into the background. The audio of all six movies were very garbled up in dialogue scenes, however the battle scenes were amplified with all the dialogue colliding with each other.
I was impressed with the creativity behind the project. In fact, I think this type of digital manipulation could be very useful for dream sequences, memories, or some sort of abstracted thought. The hybrid spaces created are completely digital, which is the only reason why this exists. Moreover, moving forward, I think it would be interesting to see two completely different movies, such as a romance and an action movie, combined to see what the mix creates.
Manovich, Lev. What is Digital Cinema. web. 2018.