Practice: Film making - Currently no debate

Need definition

Related Practice(s):
video art - sound art - sound design

Related Terms:

usually: the use of montage to create a ‘cutting rhythm’ in a sequence of shots. The term can also be applied to the rhythm of movement within a shot, and how this relates to the cutting rhythm. Stan Brakhage was a master of this. Is sometimes also used in relation to the macro structure of a film, but ‘pace’ is more often used in this context.


The word audience represents all those attending to some event, with whatever senses, as a collective, a crowd, with the tendency to have collective feelings: the audience. The audience in film is entirely extradiegetic and passive: it is outside what is happening on the screen and cannot in any way influence it.

Stuart Jones

Reception Theory

Reception theory provides a means of understanding media texts by understanding how these texts are read by audiences. Theorists who analyze media through reception studies are concerned with the experience of cinema and television viewing for spectators, and how meaning is created through that experience. An important concept of reception theory is that the media text—the individual movie or television program—has no inherent meaning in and of itself. Instead, meaning is created in the interaction between spectator and text; in other words, meaning is created as the viewer watches and processes the film. Reception theory argues that contextual factors, more than textual ones, influence the way the spectator views the film or television program. Contextual factors include elements of the viewer’s identity as well as circumstances of exhibition, the spectator’s preconceived notions concerning the film or television program’s genre and production, and even broad social, historical, and political issues. In short, reception theory places the viewer in context, taking into account all of the various factors that might influence how she or he will read and create meaning from the text.