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Panorama des rives du Nil (1897)

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When Israel was in Egypt Land
17 August 2012 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

At this point in the history of motion pictures, a panorama meant a camera that moved, any camera that moved, usually by being put on a train or boat or some such and giving the viewers a sight of what they would see in the camera's place: a constantly changing view. By the middle of the next decade, it had assumed its modern meaning of a panorama or "Pan" shot, in which the camera sat in one spot and was turned to give up to a 360 degree field of vision. Later, wide-screen techniques would attempt to replicate the original painterly sense with a wide-angle view -- and incorporate the word in such wide-screen methods as Panavision.

Although to the modern eye there isn't much change from one moment to another as the boat the camera is on moves -- occasionally a stand of palm trees passes by -- the Lumieres' intended audience would look on this as an exotic locale. They could and would do better.


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