The horse in motion

Movie, which is a fairly comprehensive art that contains a series of artistic forms, such as literature, drama, photography, painting, music, and dance, can be one of the highly controversial yet quite essential entertainments among the youngsters; however, it possesses its unique artistic characteristics that still need to be thoroughly explored in the future. It is known that movie also can function to vividly describe a reality of human nature or nowadays life, which not only satisfies the viewers' needs of entertainments but also widen their horizons in a leisurely way that helps them easily acquire necessary information without putting in practice personally, as well. Historically, the prime motion pictures, called The Horse in Motion, which was regarded as the very first movie, was photographed successfully in the way of controlling 12 cameras at the same time by Eadwear Muybridge in 1878; even though The Horse in Motion, which is apparently different from the modern movies, was just a few minutes of a series of photos, picturing a swiftly galloping racehorse, which were shown in a moving image format, it proved to be the significant inception as well as the indispensable foundation of movie industry. With the development of movie technology, a great diversity of genres, i.e. action, comedy, romance, science fiction, and thriller which make movies turn into a more abundant artistic presentation format, continuously come forth. Because the youngsters have different savors of enjoying watching movies in their spare time, they directly choose the genre of movie which is suitable for them, though there are various genres of movies available in the market nowadays. The youngsters in Kuala Lumpur, in particular, still fond for action, comedy, romance, and other classifications, as their main choice of genres of movie that have already come into being.

First of all, action movies, which are always in the top of box office, are one of the most popular genres of contemporary movies among the youngsters in Kuala Lumpur because of astonishing physical stunts, amazing and forceful use of weaponry, and popular action movie heroes and heroines. Therefore, a massive quantity of youngsters will immediately come to see a new action movie once it is shown in cinemas. In a study conducted among youngsters in Kuala Lumpur, 40 percent of them like action movies very much. It is true that drastically fighting scenes and incredibly breathtaking performances, which are fundamental elements in action movies, make youngsters feel doubly excited, so they are absorbed in action movies. Furthermore, the perfect acts, which can hardly be performed by ordinary people in reality, draw youngsters' attention directly and kindle lots of excitement inside youngsters. In addition, as plenty of weapons, such as swords, guns, and bombs, which leave a impressively visual impact on viewers, are frequently displayed in the action movie, viewers have the good opportunity to feast their eyes on the gunfight and explosion scenes; besides, these scenes also fresh youngsters' mind with a powerful hit, present them the feeling of stirring, and involve them in pursuing this feeling forever. The most extraordinary character of all, which promotes action movie to become well-known among youngsters, is the heroes and heroines. For example, Jackie Chan, who is very eminent all over the world as a Chinese action movie star, acts many leading roles in a large number of excellent action movies. He is famous for his kung fu, which is a category of martial art from ancient China, as well as his specially humorous performances. Moreover, his wonderful stunts that were shown on the screen are loved by billions of audience, especially the youngsters. As a result, the youngsters are entranced by his action movies, and even some of them attempt to imitate the acts of Jackie Chan. In brief, action is the most popular genre of movie among the youngsters in Kuala Lumpur.

Second, comedy, which exclusively possesses exaggerated acting technique, humorous expression, and amusive stories, is also a quite fashionable genre that youngsters in Kuala Lumpur are keenly interested in. It is believed that laughter efficiently regulates emotion in each person's daily life, and comedy movies are a common pattern intended to make people laugh. Depending on the same study of youngsters in Kuala Lumpur, 20 percent of the youngsters are inclined to see comedy movies. In addition, from the result, the phenomenon of the equal proportion of male to female also presents. In comedy movies, there are a number of factors that attract youngsters' attention. First of all, the funny shows given by the actors and actresses are just suitable for their lively personality of youngsters. According to Stephen Neale and Frank Krutnik, "The first thing to note is that laughter as such is not even explicitly mentioned- though 'amusing' is perhaps an obvious synonym for it. More important is the fact that criteria of content and structure are specified, in addition to criteria of affect and tone, and that equal emphasis is laid upon them. A comedy is not just 'light' and 'amusing', it is marked also by a 'happy ending' and by its concern with the representation of 'everyday life'. This is always, in the west at least, been considered an important aspect of comedy. From Aristotle on, and in contrast to tragedy (a contrast marked by the entry itself), comedy was for centuries the most appropriate genre for representing the lives, not of the ruling classes, of those with extensive power, but of the 'middle' and 'lower' orders of society, those whose power was limited and protagonists, to identify with their plights and dilemmas, to feel sorry for them, and to weep on their behalf - happy ending or not - rather than to laugh at them." (Popular Film and Television Comedy, 1990: pg.11-12), thus, amusing performances in the movies trigger a series of philosophy of the real life. Once refer to the comedy movies, Charlie Chaplin, who is regarded as the most famous comedy star throughout the world, as well as the quite considerable movie artist of critical realism, emerges spontaneously in people's mind. The humoristic image of stepping on big shoes, holding a small cane in hand, and walking likes a penguin, which was shaped vividly on the screen by Charlie Chaplin, brings the audience endless joy. In a word, the significant contribution that Charlie Chaplin has made establishes a foundation for the modern comedy movies. Consequently, comedy movies are wildly accepted by the major portion of youngsters because of the permanent essence.

Third, not only action and comedy movies are extremely prevalent, but also romance movies magically gain youngsters' much attention by narrating detailed descriptions of affairs principally focusing on the identical topic of love. In other words, the definition of romance is that "an exciting and often short relationship between two people who love each other" (LONGMAN Dictionary of Contemporary English, 2005: pg.1428), which evidently unfolds the striking feature of romance movies before viewers' eyes. For instance, Titanic, directed by James Cameron, whose budget was in excess of 200 million dollars which made it become the most expensive movie ever produced at that time, is considered as legend of immutable love of the historical romance movies; nevertheless, it is not because of the costly expenditure leading Titanic to secure the fat profit nine times as much as its outlay, but the truly wonderful plots of love story as well as the perfect performances by prominent film stars Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet contribute to the splendid accomplishment of being nominated of 14 Academy Awards and winning 11 of them which still can not be caught up with facilely by any other films up to now. According to Richard Maltby, "When the British sociologist J.P. Mayer asked readers of Picturegoer magazine to write about their film preferences in 1946, one 24-year-old female stenographer expressed her general enjoyment of 'Love and Romance' movies, and then qualified this by adding:' Boy-meets-girl romances are always refreshing to me; triangles bore me; Bette Davis' acting I admire, but continual self-sacrifice irritates me; and the mask-like new faces with which we have recently been inundated, with the possible exceptions of Van Johnson and Lauren Bacall, bewilder me.' Stars and story-type distinguish this viewer's preferences within the general category of romance. 'Boy-meets-girl' and 'triangle' stories might be regarded as sub-genres of romance; these classifications intersect with those expressed in preferences for particular stars of star types, and using this particular matrix of opinions, it would be possible to predict which 1947 romances would have been likely to appeal to this viewer. More analytically, a broad generic category such as the romance can be understood as a field containing a large collection of more or less familiar elements: stars, settings, plot events, motives, and so on. For both producers developing or promoting a movie and viewers determining their response to it, the individual genre movie achieves its uniqueness through the way that it combines these elements." (HOLLYWOOD CINEMA, 2003:pg.74-75), so an extensive variety of elements can be the possible reasons for viewers' favor of romance movies. Based on the same study mentioned above, 20 percent of Malay youngsters choose romance movies as their favorites. Moreover, the overwhelming majority of those who love romance movie are females, and "According to a Newsweek survey two months after the movie's (Titanic's) release, 60 percent of Titanic's American audience were women, and 63 percent were under 25.Forty-five percent of women under 25 who had seen the movie had seen it twice, while 76 percent of all repeat viewers planned to see it again." (HOLLYWOOD CINEMA, 2003:pg.11). That is to say the romance movies are widely prevalent among youngsters, especially the female youngsters.

However, other genres, including science fiction, horror, and drama, are loved by youngsters, as well. Every different type of movies possessing its own unique characters also appeals to the youngsters. Firstly, horror movie, which consists of horrific plots, produces frightening atmosphere to excite the viewers. Secondly, science fiction movie adopts fantastic imagination which is based on not only advanced science but also magnificent computer-generated scenes to catch youngsters' attention. Finally, drama movie, a type of movie, which is ignored by many people, mainly describes real stories in the way of leisurely pace and compacted plots. According to the same study, 10 percent of the youngsters like horror movie, 6.67 percent of the youngsters like science fiction, and 3.33 percent of the youngsters.

In general, majority of the youngsters in Kuala Lumpur prefer action, comedy, and romance to other genres of movies, because the prominent characters of the three genres are more attractive, exciting and enjoyable for the youngsters, on the other hand, the rest of the youngsters like other various types individually.


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