Reel Time/Real Time

I’m really glad I stumbled across Nick’s blog because he’s been posting right and left about the temporality of cinema and new media, questions that I’m planning to address in my book on time-travel film and media.

In particular, his discussion of VCRs and time-shifting seems interesting. He cites a September 3, 1967, New York Times article, “Soon You’ll Collect TV Reels, Like LP’s,” which predicts that TV viewers will soon be able to rent or purchase any sort of visual material, ranging from films to concerts (note to self: he also includes an image of a 1976 VCR advertisement, also from the New York Times).

Not sure I have much to add right now, but the emphasis on collecting seems important in my reading. As Nick points out, the article emphasizes that a film afficionado could “have on their bookcase shelves the best of the works of W.C. Fields or Charlie Chaplin.” I can’t read the article clearly on my browser (I’ll try again later), but the ability to collect these films, and potentially gain cultural capital in their public display in a film library, seems crucial here.

More later, but I’ve got a long day of grading for hire tomorrow.


  1. Matt Said,

    May 9, 2005 @ 12:21 am

    Yeah, Nicholas’ site is fantastic. And it’s just exploded across the blogosphere, too, film blogs and tech blogs alike.

  2. chuck Said,

    May 10, 2005 @ 3:18 pm


  3. Chuck Said,

    May 10, 2005 @ 3:26 pm

    Weird. For some reason, my own blog was blocking me from leaving comments (apparently I was saying something that my blog perceived to be obscene). I think things are working now, but if anyone is having trouble leaving comments, let me know.

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