January 31, 2013

In an Ironic Twist, Twitter's Vine Reminds Us of Iconic 19th Century Film


I finally had my first Vine experience today when a friend tweeted something to the effect of, “Great way to start my day with some rain!” then shared a looping video of the camera looking outside of her window, which was drizzling with rain drops. I’m not going to lie, while I initially didn’t see the appeal in Vine, I was mystified by the fact that my friend’s words were essentially brought to life with a visual caption of her thought. It was like a short, engaging story that was instantaneously stitched together, and I immediately fell in love.

The only thing is, do these short, bite-sized portions of film remind us of something a bit archaic? It should, as it seems to resemble old-fashioned film. They all are quick videos which can be looped to watch over and over again or strung together with others to create a second-long slideshow of sorts, which the app does immediately after being uploaded. What is widely considered the first film ever recorded in history, the Roundhay Garden Scene, shot in 1888 by Louis Aimé Augustin Le Prince, kind of resembles a black and white and much simpler way Vine now works in our modern day digital lives, sans social media:

 

Check out this video, too. While its validity cannot be confirmed of being the second oldest film ever made, many do believe this to be true. This video is played at differing speeds to show the content more closely, which gives you an even closer similarity to Vine.

 

Yahoo also reported on Vine’s unique capabilities and how they relate to 19th century film tricks – specifically, its #magic hashtag. The report compared Vine to cheesy, but at the time groundbreaking, tricks of French stage magician and filmmaker, Georges Méliès and more.

“The videos use the same techniques as some of the short ‘magic’ clips that people recorded at the beginning of film's history. Stitching together before-and-after shots helped Thomas Edison create the illusion of chopping off an actress' head in his one-minute, 1893 movie, ‘The Execution of Mary Queen of Scots,’” the report reasons.

So in a very weird way, we’re reviving some of history’s first proof of film, yet celebrating it by adding a high-tech spin.

Have you used Vine yet?




Edited by Jamie Epstein



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