cin·​e·​ma | \ ˈsi-nə-mə How to pronounce cinema (audio) , British also -ˌmä\

Definition of cinema

1a : motion picture usually used attributively
b : a motion-picture theater
2a : movies especially : the film industry
b : the art or technique of making motion pictures

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Examples of cinema in a Sentence

a student of French cinema We drove by the cinema to see what was playing.

Recent Examples on the Web

Camp fashion has been an essential part of cinema since its very origins. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "The 20 Campiest Movie Costumes of All Time," 23 Apr. 2019 To do so, of course, is to miss one of the great achievements of cinema, and Hitchcock’s most personal statement. John Anderson, WSJ, "The Heights of Obsession," 22 Feb. 2019 The conversion of the cinema is among a series of nearby projects. Tom Daykin, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Milwaukee Symphony's $89 million concert hall will have huge impact on downtown's west side," 15 June 2018 The resulting combat is possibly one of the longest battle sequences in cinema. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Game of Thrones Cast Had a "Really Miserable" Time Filming the Season 8 Battle Scene," 4 Mar. 2019 Current employees, who have asked to remain unnamed, mentioned frequent film screenings at the Buckingham Palace cinema, which sometimes take place even before the movies hit the big screen. Annabelle Spranklen, Town & Country, "What It's Really Like to Work for the Royal Family," 6 Apr. 2019 There is so much talent wasted in this movie Universal Pictures Welcome to Marwen is the latest film from director Robert Zemeckis, long one of cinema’s most compelling tinkerers. Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "Welcome to Marwen is just about the worst movie anybody involved in it has ever made," 20 Dec. 2018 This film spells the end of a story that's crossed three generations and took more than 40 years to see to completion, growing into one of the most influential pieces of science fiction in cinema history. Adam Schubak, Popular Mechanics, "Everything We Know So Far About Star Wars Episode IX," 17 Sep. 2018 The reason to look afresh at cinema subscriptions is that the old model is struggling. The Economist, "MoviePass’s useful financial horror show," 12 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cinema.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cinema

1909, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for cinema

short for cinematograph

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Statistics for cinema

Last Updated

23 May 2019

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Time Traveler for cinema

The first known use of cinema was in 1909

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More Definitions for cinema



English Language Learners Definition of cinema

: the film industry
: the art or technique of making movies
chiefly British : a movie theater


cin·​e·​ma | \ ˈsi-nə-mə How to pronounce cinema (audio) \

Kids Definition of cinema

1 : a movie theater What's playing at the cinema?
2 : the movie industry She had a long career in the cinema.

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Comments on cinema

What made you want to look up cinema? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a strong desire or propensity

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