The camera supposedly never lies, yet film's ability to frame,
cut and reconstruct all that passed before its lens made cinema the
pre-eminent medium of visual illusion and revelation from the early
twentieth century onwards. This volume examines film's creative
history of special effects and trickery, encompassing everything
from George M?li?s' first trick films to the modern CGI era.
Evaluating movements towards the use of computer-generated
'synthespians' in films such as "Final Fantasy: the Spirits Within
(2001)," this title suggests that cinematic effects should be
understood not as attempts to perfectly mimic real life, but as
constructions of substitute realities, situating them in the
cultural lineage of the stage performers and illusionists and of
the nineteenth century. With analyses of films such as "Destination
Moon" (1950), "Spider-Man" (2002) and the King Kong films (1933 and
2006), this new volume provides an insight into cinema's capacity
to perform illusions.
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