S-Space Researcher Institutes (연구소) American Studies Institute (미국학연구소) 미국학 미국학 Volume 37 Number 1/2 (2014)
Amusement Parks in the Cinema: Repositioning Film in the Culture Industry
- Kim, Soyoun
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 미국학연구소
- 미국학, Vol.37 No.1, pp. 29-54
- cinema of attractions; early cinema; amusement park; city; shock; narrativization; modernity; culture industry
- This article attempts to investigate how not only the history of the amusement park industry and of film but also the different views of modernity are highlighted in the amusement park scenes presented in Sunrise and The Crowd, two Hollywood films of the 1920s. By comparing and contrasting the amusement park scenes, this article argues that those scenes reflect the conflicting views of modernity. While Sunrise and The Crowd both present the amusement park as a place that embodies modernity itself, each film sheds light on the different aspects of modernity: in The Crowd, the amusement park scenes emphasize the totalizing and mechanizing effect of modern experience, while in Sunrise the amusement park is portrayed as a place that offers its visitors a sense of liberation and empowerment. Further, the different portraits of the amusement park mirror the different perspectives towards film’s position in the culture industry: can film be as liberating as the early form of the amusement park, or is it just a part of the standardizing system that forces individuals to merge into a large crowd? Reading the amusement park scenes in Sunrise and The Crowd together helps us to revive these questions which were at stake at the time of the early cinema.