- Movie Theater
The electrification of society is one of the principle hallmarks of the Modern Age. The Movie Palace is a marvel of modern entertainment, giving citizens a place to set their troubles aside. Hollywood represents the economics of electronic entertainment on a grand scale, with its entertainment products reaching nearly every market on the planet.
The harnessing and application of electricity was one of the chief advancements of the modern age. Although electricity had huge effects on private life when it was applied to lighting, heating, preserving food, and communications, one of the greatest social and political effects was in mass entertainment. Prior to electrical entertainment devices, no single entertainment medium could reach more than a few thousand people at a time. After the advent of radio (first public broadcast: 1906) and the movies (first public moving picture show, Paris 1895) mass entertainment and propaganda was born, and it changed the twentieth century immeasurably. It led, among other things, to the ’Pop Culture’ of the Modern Era, and to the rise of Totalitarian governments, which could use mass entertainment means to indoctrinate the entire population simultaneously.
One of the first popular mass entertainment mediums was motion pictures. The first short films were shown almost simultaneously in 1895 in New York and Paris, and by the first decade of the twentieth century dozens of small film ’studios’ were operating in New York, New Jersey, and California. Although many nations had their own film industries, Hollywood and the greater Los Angeles area was home to the largest and most successful conglomeration of movie studios in the world. By distributing its products around the world, the motion picture studios create a powerful global cultural and economic enterprise.