How do you pronounce ‘cinema’?
How do you pronounce the word cinema? Do you say it with an unstressed final syllable, like camera? Or do you put a stress on the final syllable so that it rhymes with bra?
Personally I belong to the former camp. Elongating that last syllable sounds a bit showy and unnecessary to me. One doesn’t do it with other words ending in -a: arena, rotunda, pagoda, pizza. Yet my impression is that cinemah is gaining ground. I haven’t observed any particular pattern; it doesn’t seem to be connected to region, or class, or age, or tribe. I wonder perhaps if it’s people who really love the cinema – film buffs, aficianados of the silver screen – who emphasise that last syllable, as if to emphasise the dignity and importance of the medium?