The experience of going to the movies, be it a single screen theater, twin, multiplex or drive-in, is affected by many different factors that have shifted over the years. Just as movies emerged from silent to talking, black and white to color, there has invariably been change in the way movies are made, copied, distributed and viewed. This change in the moviegoing experience, for better or for worse, is worth studying.
This work examines the American moviegoing experience from 1968 to 2001 - the way in which movies are made and regulated (including the demise of the Production Code and the emergence of the ratings system) as well as changes in lighting, cinematography and coloring techniques. The projection practices of the past and present, during and after the presence of the Projectionists Union, and the advent of the "platter," which allowed for automated projection, are discussed.
How home video and cable affected the content of films after the eighties and the history of computerized special effects leading to the development of digital cinema projection are included. The work also covers the changing types of venues over the last third of a century and other aspects that affect, positively or negatively, the entire moviegoing experience.