In the last quarter of the 19th century — USA-centrically, call it 139 years ago — we began to experience having the sound of strangers’ voices in our lives, even in our homes. Not just voices, but music from concert halls and clubs. And other sounds, too: the clip-clop of horse feet, the slam of a door, a gun-shot. Less than 100 years go, those sounds went electric, and we never looked back.
At the beginning of the 20th century, we started another love affair — this one with moving images on rectangular screens, a dance of light and shadow, windows to imaginary worlds. Or windows to recorded memories or news of distant places. When sound went electric, those moving images took voice and spoke and sang. No one alive in our society today remembers a time when moving images weren’t woven into our lives.
Here, now, into the 21st century, in an age of streaming video and music, from cloud to your pocket device (with its high-resolution display and built-in video camera), I can’t help but be impressed by how far we’ve come.
A long way, indeed.
This is too good not to share:
I was a big fan of 2001: A Space Odyssey when it came out in 1968 (I was in high school at the time). I was already a science fiction fan by then, so it was a dream movie for a guy like me. Later, in college, I majored in film and television, so came to appreciate the artistry of the film on a whole new level: as a visual tone poem by Stanley Kubrick.
It remains one of my favorite films, perhaps more for the memories and early exposure than for it being a great film that stands the test of time (although I rather think it is and does). I still see it as a very beautiful film; the visual poetry remains. The soundtrack also is quite extraordinary, I think.
But I’m still waiting for those commercial TWA flights to the moonbase!
Anyway, enjoy the video. It’s a trailer for 2001 as if it were cut today (making the film a Thriller … in space).
Funniest thing I’ve seen all week, and I’m indebted to the Bad Astronomer, Phil Plait, for posting it! If you like space or astronomy (or science or cool things), this is a blog site you want to visit daily. One of the best out there, as far as I’m concerned.