cent more image area than standard 16 mm., was introduced in 1970-1, offering film-makers a relatively inexpensive format that facilitated blow-ups to 35 mm.) In some instances, Super 8 was used as a simple recording device by performance artists, such as Vito Acconci, who captured a number of his 'acts' on Super 8 (e.g. See Through, 1970). Manuel DeLanda used Super 8 to compose a portrait of New York City street life (Harmful or Fatal if Swallowed, 1975-80) and to document his own spray-painted graffiti ( Ismism, 1977-9).
When Super 8 sound cameras were introduced in 1974, several former 8 mm. artists, such as Saul Levine ( Notes of an Early Fall, 1976; Bopping the Great Wall of China Blue, 1979), switched to Super 8 sound. But the format also spawned a new generation of artists, such as the Filipino film-maker Raymond Red ( Pelikula, 1985), punk feminist Vivienne Dick ( Guerillere Talks, 1978; Beauty Becomes the Beast, 1979), Ericka Beckman ( We Imitate: We Break-up, 1978; Out of Hand, 1980), and Beth B and Scott B, whose The Offenders ( 1978-9) achieved the status of an underground punk classic.
Though a number of film-makers, like the Bs ( Vortex, 1982), moved up from Super 8 to 16 mm., many filmmakers continue to work in Super 8, ultimately transferring their films to video for distribution and exhibition. Taking advantage of the cheapness and flexibility of amateur equipment, British director Derek Jarman ( The Tempest, 1979; The Last of England, 1987) often shot his original cinematography on Super 8. The image quality was good enough to enable him to transfer this footage to 1" video, to transfer it to 35 mm. where it was intercut with footage originally shot in 35 mm., and to release his films theatrically in 35 mm.
Video technology continues to become increasingly important in the production of commercial motion pictures. Within the next few years, more and more films are likely to be shot on HDTV. And, in the area of exhibition, an increasing number of films will undoubtedly be released simultaneously to theatres and to home viewers via payper-view cable transmission. But, despite all these changes, for the immediate future, the 35 mm. motion picture format introduced more than 100 years ago by Thomas Edison (and his assistant W. K. L. Dickson) remains the medium of redcord.
Belton, John ( 1992), Widescreen Cinema.
Handzo, Stephen ( 1985), "A Narrative Glossary of Film Sound Technology".
Issari, Mohammad Ali, and Paul, Doris A. ( 1979), What Is Cinema Verite?
Lipton, Lenny ( 1975), The Super 8 Book.
Salt, Barry ( 1992), Film Style and Technology: History and Analysis.
Souto, H. Mario Raimondo ( 1977), The Technique of the Motion Picture Camera.
In American movies before the 1960s, Hollywood's notorious Production Code dictated that characters got shot without bleeding, argued without swearing, and had babies without copulating. Censorship especially wreaked havoc with plot and motivation in films which either elided or occluded sexuality as an event in human life. This is not to say that sexual desire did not circulate in American films, but it was displaced: the objects of this desire tended to be exotic, often European, femmes fatales -- unattainable, glamorous, female ideals like Garbo and Dietrich whose bodies were always somehow distanced from the desires they animated.
In Europe, and particularly Scandinavia, on the other hand, sexual representations had always been comparatively less censored. French and Italian cinemas were more open to the representation of adulterous, or otherwise 'illicit', liaisons which, if not explicitly shown, were at least fully there in the narrative. Sexual desires were, for example, fully ensconced as theme and motive in French silent and sound films from Renoir's Nana ( 1926) to Max Ophuls's grand French films of the 1950s, La Ronde ( 'Merrygo-round', 1950), Le Plaisir ( 'Pleasure', 1952), and Madame de . . . (English title The Earrings of Madame de . . . , 1953). In Italy, where a certain earthiness had always prevailed, motives had often been sexual. A telling example is Visconti's Ossessione ('Obsession', 1942), adapted from James Cain's hard-boiled novel The Postman Always Rings Twice, which portrayed the physical and material hungers of provincial characters in a visceral way that the 1946 American film of the novel could not. In Italy, the return to contemporary reality called for by neo-realism meant that films as diverse as Rossellini's Il miracolo ('The miracle', 1948), De Santis's Bitter Rice ( Riso amaro, 1948), and later post-neorealist films such as De Sica's Two Women ( 1960) and Fellini's La dolce vita ( 1960) would explore sexual themes across a wide range of settings, from Anna Magnani's 'innocent' immaculate conception to Marcello Mastroianni's decline into decadent sexual play.