The Moviegoing Experience, 1968-2001 - A Book Review

A Potpourri of Vestiges Feature

The Moviegoing Experience, 1968-2001, Cover, Richard W. Haines
As far back as I can remember, I have always loved the movies. The glitz and the glamour of the world of dreams we call cinema gives it an irresistible charm. In today's age things either evolve or become obsolete. We live in a competitive age where adaptability is the panacea for success. The movie viewing experience too come a long way since its formative years. From the silent era of 1920s to today's modern age, the cinema has experienced quite a dramatic transformation. The experience of going to the moviesbe it a single screen theater, twin, multiplex or drive-inis affected by many different factors that have gradually changed over the years. Almost everything about the movies, right from how they are made, copied, distributed and viewed, has undergone some change or the other. This change in the moviegoing experience, for better or for worse, is worth studying. But, has anyone ever tried to study or document these changes? Well, if you are curious to find a cogent answer then Richard W. Haines' "The Moviegoing Experience, 1968-2001" is precisely what you need!

Haines' multifaceted work examines in great depth the American moviegoing experience from 1968 to 2001. (i) The way in which movies are made and regulated, including the demise of the Production Code and the emergence of the ratings system. (ii) Changes in lighting, cinematography and coloring techniques. (iii) The projection practices of the past and present, during and after the presence of the Projectionists Union, and the advent of the "platter," which allowed for automated projection. (iv) How home video and cable affected the content of films after the eighties and the history of computerized special effects leading to the development of digital cinema projection. (v) The changing types of venues over the last third of a century and other aspects that affect, positively or negatively, the entire moviegoing experience. 

The learned author was kind enough to share his valuable thoughts with "A Potpourri of Vestiges":

  • "What I did was describe the Roadshow 70mm presentation of '2001: A Space Odyssey' in 1968 and compare it to a typical megaplex 35mm presentation in 2001 to illustrate the changes of how movies were shown in theaters.
  • "The demise of Technicolor and 70mm along with single screen cinemas that had curtains and reserved seats are discussed and why earlier distribution formulas changed."
  • "I even discuss the possibility of film disappearing and being replaced by digital projection which has come to pass along with the problems associated with the preservation of digital data."
  • "Other topics I discuss include revival theaters, the demise of drive-ins and film restorations."

All in all, the book a must read for any cinema lover or historian. It is available on Amazon.

About the Author:

Richard W Haines, Profile picture, American indie auteur filmmaker

Richard W. Haines is an indie auteur filmmaker, film historian and pulp fiction novels. His seven movies feature unusual technology. "Space Avenger" (1989) was printed in real three strip Technicolor in China. "Run for Cover" was shot in Stereovision 3D and his film noir thriller, "Unsavory Characters" replicated the lighting design of the genre. Haines film history books are "Technicolor Movies" and "The Moviegoing Experience 1968-2001". His novels are mysteries that take place in the world of cinema, "Production Value", "Reel Danger" and the soon to be published, "The Anastasia Killer".

People who liked this also liked...
Share on Google Plus


Thanks for sharing for valuable opinion. We would be delighted to have you back.