1,250 Words, 5-6 Page Film Analysis Essay Assignment Analyzing How Cinematic Techniques Work Together To Create Meaning Or Messages In A Film.

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Your Final Draft of your Film Analysis Essay assignment will need to be a 5-6 page (1,250 word) essay analyzing how cinematic techniques work together to create meaning or messages in a film.
Step 1: Option A: Select one film by one director to analyze. You may analyze any film screened in class or other films of your own choosing. Option B: Choose two films by the same auteur and analyze both films.
The film (s) you choose must be readily available for repeated close viewing on DVD or online streaming. If you choose to analyze a film from the class, your analysis must go significantly beyond what has already been discussed in lecture and section.
Step 2: Watch your films and take notes. Pay attention to the broad themes explored in the film, its overall structure, and significant techniques used. In the Week 15 Folder there are pdfs and links by titled “Writing about a Film” and can be very helpful to you here. There will also be sample templates and examples.
Step 3: Ask yourself questions. Review the discussion questions that have typically been asked in lectures, our quizzes, and discussion boards, as well as those included in our practice discussion questions for the film analysis essay. Ask yourself these same questions about the film you have selected.
For instance:
Does a particular color or lighting scheme dominate in certain scenes? If so, why? How do they contribute to the overall message of the story you think the film is attempting to provide to the audience?
• Is the narrative chronological or achronological? What effect does this arrangement have? Does the film engage with genre conventions? How and for what purpose?
• With whom do we identify in this film? What effect could this have on the viewer?
• Evaluate the roles of the villain and the hero, are they concrete or is the hero/villain portrayed in a manner that needs to be countered?
• What role, if any, do women or multiculturalism, or social issues and themes play in the narrative?
• Is there anything you noticed in this film that audience members may have missed about the theme, examples of symbolism, or messages this film is trying to convey to the viewers?
• Begin to formulate an argument. The key to your essay will be developing an original, specific thesis statement about how particular film techniques underscore one or two key themes from the above list (or
something you’ve come up with on your own) in the film. Answering the questions above will help you formulate a thesis.
o Ineffective thesis statement: In this essay I will analyze the use of racism in Get Out and US using scenes, connecting it to larger thematic and visual patterns in the film as a whole.
o Effective thesis statement: In Get Out and US, director Jordan Peele emphasizes location and setting alongside camera techniques to illustrate powerlessness and strength in the protagonists, while also encouraging viewers to identify with the position of victimization.
Step 4: Select examples to include in your essay. Your paper must include close cinematic analysis of the type you did in your sequence analysis essay. Plan on analyzing one or two brief sequences from your chosen film in detail, this will help you meet the word count. Remember the outline is to assist in organizing your paper, but feel free to use any outline you wish.


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