As a rule, it is a museum that explains its object through exhibitions - from the optical devices (for example the magic lantern , which is considered the forerunner of moving images), to objects and props that are directly or indirectly used in the production of films until the documentation of the people who are involved in the production of films. In the case of the Munich Film Museum, however, the word designates a part of the Munich City Museum in which films are shown - the main curatorial and restoration work is largely hidden from the public's eye.
Film museums in Germany
In Germany there are seven institutions that call themselves a film museum:
- Filmmuseum München (film museum in the Münchner Stadtmuseum ; since 1963). Cinematheque with an international reputation. Continuous film program, the strong exchange with international archives enables access to rare films. Occasionally exhibitions.
- Filmmuseum Potsdam (since 1981). Opened as the "Film Museum of the GDR", the permanent exhibition is dedicated to the history of DEFA , the central film studio of the GDR . Many of their films were made on the premises of the nearby Babelsberg studios, as were those of the previous production company UFA (until 1945), which are also extensively honored. Special exhibitions, own cinema with historical cinema organ .
- German Film Museum Frankfurt am Main (since 1984). In addition to the permanent exhibition on the pre- / early / history of film, numerous special exhibitions, which are thematically supplemented by the cinema in the same building (a communal cinema , also has a cinema organ).
- Filmmuseum Düsseldorf (since 1993). As a "school of vision", it sets strong accents on film content without leaving out the technology. Special exhibitions. The Black Box cinema with a cinema organ from 1929 is located in the house .
- Filmmuseum Berlin (since 2001, renamed the Museum for Film and Television since the opening of the Permanent Exhibition Television). Presents parts of the collection of the Deutsche Kinemathek Foundation (since 1963) in the Filmhaus on Potsdamer Platz , where the “ Arsenal - Institute for Film and Video Art e. V. ”, the affiliated distributors , the DFFB (Berlin Film Academy ) and an extensive film library can be found. Instead of the technical basics of the projection (which can consequently be seen in the Technikmuseum Berlin), there is a strong reference to content and people (the permanent exhibition focuses on the Marlene Dietrich estate ) with dangling from film tricks (area to stop motion specialist Ray Harryhausen ), numerous Special exhibitions.
- The Bendestorf Film Museum is located on the historic Bendestorf film site, where almost 100 full-length feature films and film series were made between 1947 and 2005.
The Industry and Film Museum in Wolfen is not concerned with (cinema) film, but with photographic film . Former Agfa film production facility, the focus is on the presentation of the raw film production process for cameras.
In addition, there are exhibition areas on the subject of photo and film technology in many city technology museums, and some private collectors also exhibit their devices.
Minister of State for Culture Bernd Neumann recognized the importance of the film museums in 2011.
Film museums in other countries (selection)
- Cinemateca Brasileira, São Paulo 
- Cinemateca Portuguesa , Lisbon 
- Oslo Film Museum 
- Institute Lumiere, Lyon 
- Nederlands Filmmuseum (Filmmuseum Amsterdam) 
- Moscow Film Museum
- Museum of Modern Art , New York, Department of Film and Video
- Museum of the Moving Image, Astoria, New York 
- National Media Museum, Bradford 
- National Film Museum in the Mole Antonelliana , Turin
- Austrian Film Museum , Vienna 
- Swiss Film Museum, Basel
- Academy Museum of Motion Pictures , USA
- Rolf Aurich and Ralf Forster (eds.): How the film became immortal. Pre-academic film studies in Germany . edition text + kritik , Munich 2015. (especially the part "Film exhibitions", pp. 97–135)