Dedicate at least two-to-three paragraphs to a formal analysis about a shot, scene, or scenes that supports the argument of your paper. (basically  a condensed version of what you did for Paper One)

References: Make reference to at least three critical/academic sources.


Citations: Use any  standard system of citations (in-text, footnotes, etc). If using in-text citations, then be sure to add a Works Cited or Bibliography page.



By this point in the course, you have developed a competence in formal analysis. Now, we increase the scale of your analysis: the analysis of a complete film. In your first paper, you analyzed a shot and a scene. For  your second 4-6 page paper, you are asked to evaluate one film in its entirety.


In short, you must select a film seen (in whole or in part) during class lectures or screenings (Monday screenings or online  assignments) and write a paper about ONE DIMENSION of that film that you find interesting.  There is no question to answer; rather you have to decide what in the film  is worth writing about. You create the question and the answer. It helps if you can decide what approach you are taking. Some common approaches are:


A. Formal analysis: An element of film form (for example, lighting, mise-en-scene, or camera movement).  For example, the use of wide-screen in Kurosawa’s High and Low or the use of color in Masumura’s Giants and Toys.

B. Representational analysis: A single element which is represented in a distinctive way. For examplee, the question  of truth in Rashomon, economic growth in Masumura’s Giants and Toys, or revenge in Miike’s Audition.

C. Auteurist analysis: A pattern, tendency, or element that is important in the context of a filmmaker’s body of work. Remember, for example, the still image in Ozu.

D. Feminist analysis: The representation of gender and sex, with special attention to  cinema’s alignment of the camera with conventional, gendered ways of seeing/looking and being seen/being looked at. For  example, the portrayal of women in genre films like Tampopo or Audition.

E. National and/or Historical analysis: how national identity or history is portrayed through film

F. Genre analysis:  How a film participates, advances, or deviates from its genre or genres.


Since we are still learning and you are not professional film critics  (at least, not yet!), there are a few guidelines to follow:

1) Dedicate at least two-to-three paragraphs to a formal analysis about a shot, scene, or scenes that supports the argument of your paper. (basically  a condensed version of what you did for Paper One)

2)  Be sure to reference three critical or scholarly  sources.

3)  Your paper should also situate the film next to two other films. In other words, depending on your approach, make some reference  to other films that support your argument and that highlight by similarity or contrast the point you are trying to make.


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