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Article Title

What Makes a Movie

Abstract

Perhaps when the conditions of film projection will change, through technical progresses which promise to allow us to have access at will to films, it may be possible to walk leisurely, to wander, to loaf about, stroll and loiter …delighted to explore the ordered depth of a film, to appreciate a thousand details in a sequence while experiencing the unique character of the whole.

This quote from Baudry looked forward from the conclusion of our early piece “Access to Moving Image Documents,” published before the availability of digital computational tools. The digital environment has provided the stage for Baudry’s vision, as well as for the resolution of Bellour’s observation that film is ‘unattainable, in the sense of introuvable, by being literally and figuratively unquotable, everlastingly slipping through in the instance of being identified, seized for closer scrutiny.’ The digital environment enables access at the frame level, with idiosyncratic movements through a filmic text being now almost trivial. However, the mechanics of access to the smallest units of video documents does not, in and of itself, resolve the issues of just how to wander, loaf, and delight; nor does such access necessarily make obvious how we might make sense of videos.

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