Recommend to your Librarian

Request a Review Copy

The Audience Effect

On the Collective Cinema Experience

Julian Hanich

Paperback (Forthcoming)
eBook (ePub) i
eBook (PDF) i

Explores the experiences spectators have when they watch a film collectively in a cinema

Is the experience of watching a film with others in a cinema crucially different from watching a film alone? Does laughing together amplify our enjoyment, and when watching a film in communal rapt attention, does this intensify the whole experience?

Show more


List of Illustrations

Establishing Shot: Definition and History
1. Introduction: What Is the Audience Effect?
2. Excavating the Audience Effect: Precursors in the History of Film Theory

Long Shot: Types of Collective Viewing
Introductory Notes
3. Quiet-Attentive Viewing: Toward a Typology of Collective Spectatorship, Part I
4. Expressive-Diverted Viewing: Toward a Typology of Collective Spectatorship, Part II

Medium Shot: On the Cinema’s Affective Audience Effects
5. I, You and We: Investigating the Cinema’s Affective Audience Interrelations
6. Feeling Close: Conceptualizing the Cinema’s Affective We-Experiences

Close-up: Case Studies of Affective Audience Effects
7. Chuckle, Chortle, Cackle: A Phenomenology of Cinematic Laughter
8. When Viewers Silently Weep: A Phenomenology of Cinematic Tears
9. Distance and Distraction: A Phenomenology of Cinematic Anger

Fade-Out: Conclusion
10. The Audience Effect in the Cinema and Beyond


About the Author

Julian Hanich is Associate Professor of Film Studies at the University of Groningen. In his research he focuses on audience emotions and affects, the film experience, and questions of film style. His first monograph Cinematic Emotion in Horror Films and Thrillers: The Aesthetic Paradox of Pleasurable Fear (2010) was a phenomenological investigation into the question why viewers enjoy being scared. His articles have appeared in Screen, Cinema Journal, Projections and many others.


'Carefully researched...For those looking to learn more about the complex responses of audiences of cinematic art this is the book you should consult.'
- Bob Lane, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, Vancouver Island University, Metapsychology
'Hanich has written The Audience Effect as an exercise in phenomenology, or, the philosophical analysis of forms of perception and engagement, their workings and implications. Watching films is seen not just as a visual, or even aural, process, but one engaging all aspects of a person, and (just about) all parts of our bodies. [...] There’s little doubt that to those drawn to this approach, Hanich’s book will be a significant addition.'
- Martin Barker, Participations

You might also like ...