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A Robust Neural Fingerprint of Cinematic Shot-Scale

Gal Raz, Giancarlo Valente, Michele Svanera, Sergio Benini, and András Bálint Kovács

correlates of shot-scales ( Figure 3 ): first, fMRI data was collected from healthy volunteers while they were watching at least one of these clips. Second, we applied a machine-learning approach on this data and developed a computational model that

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Neurocinematics: The Neuroscience of Film

Uri Hasson, Ohad Landesman, Barbara Knappmeyer, Ignacio Vallines, Nava Rubin, and David J. Heeger

This article describes a new method for assessing the effect of a given film on viewers' brain activity. Brain activity was measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during free viewing of films, and inter-subject correlation analysis (ISC) was used to assess similarities in the spatiotemporal responses across viewers' brains during movie watching. Our results demonstrate that some films can exert considerable control over brain activity and eye movements. However, this was not the case for all types of motion picture sequences, and the level of control over viewers' brain activity differed as a function of movie content, editing, and directing style. We propose that ISC may be useful to film studies by providing a quantitative neuroscientific assessment of the impact of different styles of filmmaking on viewers' brains, and a valuable method for the film industry to better assess its products. Finally, we suggest that this method brings together two separate and largely unrelated disciplines, cognitive neuroscience and film studies, and may open the way for a new interdisciplinary field of “neurocinematic” studies.

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From the Editor

Ted Nannicelli

advanced by art historians Alois Riegl and Heinrich Wölfflin. To do this, they apply a machine-learning model to neurological data supplied by a set of fMRI scans. Methodology is the explicit topic of our third article, by Jose Cañas-Bajo, Teresa Cañas

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Forking Cinematic Paths to the Self: Neurocinematically Informed Model of Empathy in Motion Pictures

Gal Raz and Talma Hendler

This article reviews significant developments in affective neuroscience suggesting a refinement of the contemporary theoretical discourse on cinematic empathy. Accumulating evidence in the field points to a philogeneticontogenetic-neural boundary separating empathic processes driven by either cognitive or somato-visceral representations of others. Additional evidence suggests that these processes are linked with parasympathetically driven mitigation and proactive sympathetic arousal. It presents empirical findings from a functional magnetic resonance (fMRI) film viewing study, which are in line with this theoretical distinction. The findings are discussed in a proposed cinematographic framework of a general dichotomy between eso (inward-directed) and para (side by side with)—dramatic cinematic factors impinging on visceral representations of real-time occurrences or cognitive representations of another's mind, respectively. It demonstrates the significance of this dichotomy in elucidating the unsettling emotional experience elicited by Michael Haneke's Amour.

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Examining the Relationship between Story Structure and Audience Response

How Shared Brain Activity Varies over the Course of a Narrative

Sara M. Grady, Ralf Schmälzle, and Joshua Baldwin

divided by developmental age bracket. Methods In this study, we analyze a public dataset (OpenNeuro #ds000228) that contains fMRI recordings from a sample of adults and children watching a Pixar short film ( Richardson et al. 2018 ). Below, we

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Enactive Authorship

Second-Order Simulation of the Viewer Experience—A Neurocinematic Approach

Pia Tikka

studying film experients as embodied agents include functional neuroimaging (e.g., fMRI, MEG, EEG) in addition to a range of psychophysiological measurement techniques, subjective viewer reports, and ratings. The empirical challenge of all these approaches

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A Moderately Pessimistic Perspective on “Cooperative Naturalism”

David Davies

identified in macaques. Luca Turella and colleagues (2009), for example, question whether functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and positron emission tomography (PET) studies have demonstrated within reasonable doubt that exactly the same brain area is

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The Neuroscience of Film

Vittorio Gallese and Michele Guerra

, however, can be connected to embodiment. Let's focus briefly, as an example, on spectators’ engagement with the fictional characters. A recent fMRI study ( Broom et al. 2021 ) investigated whether identification with fictional characters is associated with

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Dramatic Irony

A Case Study in the Mutual Benefit of Combining Social Neuroscience with Film Theory

Cynthia Cabañas, Atsushi Senju, and Tim J. Smith

resonance (fMRI; e.g. Hasson et al. 2004 ; 2008 ; Wagner et al. 2016 ; Richardson and Saxe 2019 ), have been extensively used to localize the brain regions underlying socio-cognitive processing. Nevertheless, it is important to bear in mind that movies

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A Baroque Body in the Theatricality of Online Interactions

Amin Heidari

. “ Emojis Influence Autobiographical Memory Retrieval from Reading Words: An fMRI-based Study. ” PLOS ONE 15 ( 7 ): 1 – 12 . Chen , Zhenpeng , Xuan Lu , Wei Ai , Huoran Li , Qiaozhu Mei , and