American History In Motion Pictures Research Essay

American History In Motion Pictures Essay, Research PaperAmerican History in Motion PicturesWe were at that place while the Titanic sank, we stormed Omaha Beach at Normandy, we saw the Battle of Gettysburg in individual, and we rode throughout the West with Wyatt Earp. We were able to make this because Hollywood allowed us to travel to these historic times through the films. Hollywood allows us to travel back in clip to see how people lived, to witness the major events that shaped our universe, and assist give us a better apprehension of a clip period that we might non otherwise appreciation. The films help give us a ocular image, of the yesteryear, pictures that might non be easy extracted from a book. The agencies by which history has been taught has changed dramatically throughout the class of history. Ancient civilizations taught history through the unwritten reciting of events.

Giving the Teller the freedom to alter history but besides giving people a intimacy with the narrative. With the debut of the written word a more scientific attack was taken and an event could be studied and analyzed by many different people, this created a more additive manner of believing about history. By seting historical events into films it changed the manner history was perceived. History was no longer merely on the page of a book it was now ocular. It had the ability to demo things that were hard to depict in words, throwing several things at the spectator in one scene where it would take 20 pages to depict the state of affairs on paper. It had the ability to make a new audience and the ability to distribute the cognition of events to people who would non larn it from a book. The alteration has been so drastic that a history category of today would likely larn more about the Civil War from the film Gettysburg than from reading The Killer Angles, the book from which the film is based.

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? It is history written in lightning. ? Former president Woodrow Wilson spoke these words after seeing D.W. Griffith & # 8217 ; s masterpiece The Birth of a State in 1915. The Birth of a State is considered as Hollywood? s foremost? blockbuster? film and is a historical image. It is the narrative of the South during Reconstruction and how the people must contend outside forces to keep their normal lives. The Birth of a Nation served as a format for historical images for many old ages to come. Moviemakers began to accommodate celebrated novels, dramas, and events into films to pull a crowd and to besides function a instruction intent.

One writer suggests that, ? One of the cardinal maps of the new mass amusement industry was to instill American values in the new immigrants and the lone tested and true values were the old rural Protestant values of self-help, austere morality, a regard for household life, and a committedness to traditional sex roles. ? Nowhere were these values found more than in novels and in the records of history. The chief theatres of the clip were filled with these new immigrants and the films that were coming out of Hollywood, while entertaining, instilled this American moral codification in them. Until recent old ages war films were non produced with any negative intensions toward war, with the mild exclusion of a few, viz. the version of All Quiet on the Western Front. War movies showed the love affair and escapade of war and did non brood on the existent horrors of it. They were at that place as propaganda and they helped construct a strong sense of patriotism in the state.

Merely after the civil alterations of the 60? s and 70? s have anti-war films such as Born on the Forth of July, Apocalypse Now, and Platoon began to take a new and different expression into war. Each of these coevals? s films decidedly reflect the ambiance of the clip, yet another manner that films can be linked to historical survey.The accurate diversion of events is a job that Hollywood must postulate with.

How do you do a historically accurate movie with out traveling into excessively much tiring item? Since most historical events would be near impossible to absolutely retroflex, most historical movies take a fictional point to demo the true facets of the state of affairs. The movie Glory trades with this in a alone manner. Glory is the narrative of the Fifty-fourth Massachusetts Regiment of black soldiers during the Civil War. The film has to manage several inside informations such as the preparation of work forces, the combat of conflicts, or even the smallest inside informations of how a room looked at That clip. Cipher knows what the regimental commanding officer? s room looked like at the exact minute that he was offered control of the regiment, but what they can make is state this is an accurate description of a common room of the clip. Cipher knows how the soldiers were trained or what happened precisely in the conflict, but they can take written grounds and give a good representation of how it may hold looked.

Another job faced in a film like this are the characters. Taking existent soldiers from the regiment and stating the narrative through them would non be enlightening or entertaining. Solution ; by making four chief characters, each a stereo-type a country-boy, an older wise adult male, a racially angry immature black adult male, and an rational, the narrative can make struggle between the diverse characters while besides demoing the larger image of what was traveling on. This is non pure fiction, these are four places that perchance could hold been filled at this clip, and it focuses around the existent events of the Fifty-fourth Massachusetts Regiment. A big ground for the add-on of fiction to historical fact to state a narrative is the importance of amusement in a narrative while maintaining the historical narrative integral. How many people would hold sat through two and a half hours of Salvaging Private Ryan if it was strictly a diversion and description of the conflict at Normandy and the struggles of the environing countries, really few ( this would likely include myself ) . However throw in the narrative line of a private losing his brothers to the war and a group of soldiers put on the lining their lives to salvage his, and you have an award winning film that 1000000s of people go to see and the film-makers are still able to learn people about the horrors of this war and what those soldiers really faced.Historical movie is besides used in other ways such as a author showing hi theories about a questionable period, or a group of people falsifying the facts to beef up their point of position.

History has long been accused of stating half-truths and seting a spin on controversial state of affairss, utilizing the stating? the victors write the history books. ? Movies seem to take the same attack, a film made in Germany around the clip of the universe wars will press the issue that the allied powers in those wars were the attackers and that they were simply contending for the? female parent land? . However, a film produced in the United States will province the fact that Germany was in fact the true attackers and that they merely stepped in for the good of the universe. Peoples have accused many films of being biased about history Birth of a State was criticized because it depicted the Ku Klux Klan as the Jesuss of the South. Gone With the Wind was criticized because of its word picture of slaves, even though it simply showed what it was likely like on an ante-bellum plantation. Even the older war films, that were propagandist in manner, have come under examination for their light positions on war.

Other authors have used the medium of films to show their theories on what truly go on in the yesteryear. The best illustration of this is Oliver Stone? s JFK, this film endured a batch of examination for Stone? s mixture of existent and fictional events. The film attacks us on many different degrees.

It attacks our emotions every bit good as assailing the hierarchy of our state. Stone winds and blend the truth and fiction much more than is done in a film like Glory. Stone twists the fact to the point that you are non certain what to believe while the fiction in Glory helps to stress the truth. There are two chief ailments over the abuse of history in movie: foremost, that a historical movie is no more than a piece of written history transferred to the screen, and therefore capable to the same regulations of historical pattern ; and back, that a fact is a fact and that history is little more than a digest of facts. However, we must recognize that facts can non stand on their ain, they must be supported by the work from which they are embedded. To measure them is to look at their ends and possibilities.

The mass media spectacle known as gesture images has many different facets and utilizations. We can utilize these films to larn about the yesteryear every bit good as Teach the yesteryear. The industry has its ends of doing money, but hopefully non to the extent of give uping the end of bring forthing historically accurate movies that help us larn more about our yesteryear every bit good as our hereafter.


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