Using New Media Technologies to Transform German Film. A Study in the Proliferation of Communication Genres

Author: Grieb, Margit
Year:2012
Pages:216
ISBN:0-7734-2919-0
978-0-7734-2919-2
Price:179.95
Addresses the lack of scholarship on the impact of new media on German film. It provides analysis that focuses on cinematic practices and productions and how they have been affected by a variety of technologies. The author narrows her critical focus to specific examples that illustrate very particular effects. She focuses on filmmakers who are working outside of the established mainstream Hollywood studio production system. There is also usage of Bertolt Brecht’s theories on new media and theatre to better understand how technologies impact performance art.

The book is most interested in how artists re-invent, re-define, or re-discover the form and content of the conventional medium of film and the cinema as an institution through the use of technological innovations.

Reviews

“Despite the dearth of analysis that addresses the momentous changes and implications, the author stands out with her articulate and cogently argued study that focuses on the dialogic relationship of German film between emerging technologies such as digital video, HDTV, videogames and new technologies of distribution and storage such as Blu-ray discs. She covers several popular contemporary feature filmmakers.”

-Prof. Nora M. Alter,
Temple University


“The author has a solid grasp of what is at stake historically, aesthetically, and culturally when she describes and evaluates various encounters of the older medium of film as it is coupled or transformed by new visual technologies.”

-Prof. Will Lehman,
Western Carolina University


“The monograph is not only rich in its many levels (from Brecht’s theory of Epic Theatre to theories of hypermedia), but timely. Grieb joins scholars of hypermedia at a moment in its history where she can still have a voice in shaping its criticism. Furthermore, by looking at a German-specific context and using predominantly materials from German-speaking artists, she adds an innovative and original perspective to the field of new media studies in general.”

-Prof. Stephan Schindler,
University of South Florida

Table of Contents

FOREWORD Professor Nora M. Alter i
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS vii

INTRODUCTION 1

CHAPTER ONE – NEW MEDIA IN THEORY AND PRACTICE 13
The Epic Theater Stage 17
The Lehrstück and Schaustück Meet Technology 19
Building on Brecht: Interaction, Participation, and Vergnügen 22
Hypermediation 31
Brechtian Theory and Recent Developments in the Public Sphere 43
Conclusion: Brecht after Brecht – Continuations and Transgressions 47

CHAPTER TWO – TELEVISION, VIDEO AND FILM 51
Wim Wenders – Visions and Revisions 62
Wim Wenders, Digital Guru 69
Until the End of the World or How to Split HD from TV 72
Video Recording as an Act of Violence 79
Kluges Fernsehen? Other Voices in Television 86
Recording the Past and Future on Video and Film 89
Conclusion: 3-D - The New Old Frontier 94

CHAPTER THREE – VIDEOGAMES AND FILM 97
Run Lara Run: Reinventing Popular Appeal 100
Films and Games: A Winning Combination? 106
Conquering Space through Speed 109
The Quest for Narrative 115
Superweib or Superwoman? 109
Conclusion: Popular Cinema and Reflections on Originality 124

CHAPTER FOUR – DISTRIBUTION, STORAGE, RESTORATION
AND FILM 127
Films on CD-ROM: Valie Export's Medial Anagrams 132
Intersections of Feminism and Technology 137
The Interface as mise-en-abyme 143
LaserDisc Paves Way for DVD-Video and Blu-ray 151
Making Films Special: Packaging and Marketing 155
Setting the Mood: The DVD-Video Interface and Blu-ray Menu 166
Conclusion: Film and Cinema: Toward an Expanded Definition 171

WORKS CITED 173
INDEX 187