The Daily Evergreen

Should film be considered an art form

Fine arts comprised of music, paintings, theater; inclusion of movies should be accepted

Ruth+Gregory%2C+assistant+director+of+Digital+Technology+and+Culture+program%2C+speaks+about+the+significance+of+film+as+an+art+form+Sep.+12+at+the+SPARK.
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Should film be considered an art form

Ruth Gregory, assistant director of Digital Technology and Culture program, speaks about the significance of film as an art form Sep. 12 at the SPARK.

Ruth Gregory, assistant director of Digital Technology and Culture program, speaks about the significance of film as an art form Sep. 12 at the SPARK.

JULIA KAMINSKI | THE DAILY EVERGREEN

Ruth Gregory, assistant director of Digital Technology and Culture program, speaks about the significance of film as an art form Sep. 12 at the SPARK.

JULIA KAMINSKI | THE DAILY EVERGREEN

JULIA KAMINSKI | THE DAILY EVERGREEN

Ruth Gregory, assistant director of Digital Technology and Culture program, speaks about the significance of film as an art form Sep. 12 at the SPARK.

MARY GINTHER, Evergreen columnist

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The controversy over whether film is officially considered an art form has been a long-standing one.

Some people go to see movies such as “21 Jump Street” just for the entertainment from Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum. However, it’s questionable if that’s art.

Ruth Gregory, instructor and assistant director of the WSU Digital Technology and Culture program, explained both why and how film should be considered an art form.

An example of an artistic movie would be Takeshi Murata’s 2005 film work titled, “Monster Movie,” which was recently played at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art.

This movie includes a clip from a 1981’s “Caveman.” This clip has been torn apart and put back together and includes aggressive, loud background music to symbolize how the digital film world is taking over the old media world, Gregory said.

“‘Monster Movie’ is about ripping up film and [it] represents how current media is doing this to old film,” she said.

“Monster Movie” is only 10 minutes long and plays on a constant loop in the Smithsonian today. Takeshi Murata wasn’t the first filmmaker to make the artistic choice of ripping up old film and putting it back together. The Soviets also did this during the Soviet montage period, Gregory said.

There was a shortage of new and unused film in the Soviet Union. Since they had no new film to use, the Soviets had to reuse the film they had already gathered, piece it together and create a film of used scenes to train militia and provide entertainment to the people.

Gregory said the “auteur theory” is used by having the director be the author of the film rather than the screenwriter. For example, Wes Anderson is a filmmaker who is known for doing this.

This theory is about the fundamentals of visual elements such as camera placement, blocking, lighting and scene length. There are different elements and work that goes into this theory, and it gives films such as Wes Anderson’s a more artistic statement.

“Art can be many different things,” Gregory said. “Film is still trying to find its place in the art world.”

Film is a special type of art form. It can be a cult classic such as “American Beauty” or even an arguably basic movie such as “Mean Girls,” but both films could be considered art.

About the Writer
MARY GINTHER, Evergreen reporter

Mary Ginther is a freshman broadcast journalism major from Sammamish, WA.

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Should film be considered an art form