The instantly historic video of Mitt Romney’s address to backers in Florida is important for its content, of course, but a significant dose of its affect arises from its visual style.
There are many reasons to read Brody’s New Yorker blog, The Front Row and posts like this are chief among them. I, like most people, see these videos and think of the breaking news implications. He sees cinema:
It’s the difference between theatre and cinema: politics used to be a stage, in which candidates performed with a rhetorical fervor and their conspicuous artifice was a source of ridicule. Now, it’s an open-ended movie, in which the camera threatens constantly to reveal actual character, and this drives candidates to an even more impeccable and impressive yet alienating technical perfection (as it does to many movie actors).