film analysis example

film analysis example

  • Symbols – when something stands not only for itself ( a literal meaning), but also stands for something else (a figurative meaning) e.g. The feather in the film Forrest Gump symbolizes his destiny.
  • What images are used in the film? e.g. color, objects etc.
  • Can you find any symbols?

Films are similar to novels or short stories in that they tell a story. They include the same genres: romantic, historical, detective, thriller, adventure, horror, and science fiction. However, films may also include sub-groups such as: action, comedy, tragedy, westerns and war. The methods you use to analyze a film are closely related to those used to analyze literature; nevertheless, films are multimedial. They are visual media made for viewers. Films take command of more of our senses to create special atmospheres, feelings or to bring out emotions.

Film analysis example
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In your analysis of the movie, discuss the major themes raised in the film. What conflicts other than that of race do you see? Then, analyze the main characters of the movie. Create profiles for Mookie, Sal, Giuseppe (Pino), Radio Raheem, Da Mayor, and others and compare and contrast them.

Film analysis example
In Amy Tan’s “The Joy Luck Club,” the story follows an Asian woman named Jun, who is the daughter of the deceased Suyuan, the founder of the Joy Luck Club, which is a social group. The film is directed by Wayne Wang and was released in 1993. The storyline follows the lives of the Asian mothers. The stories of them immigrating from China to America are told by their daughters.

The movie alternates between San Francisco, California and China. The scenes that depict San Francisco are meant to represent the present day. The present day also includes a trip at the end of the film to Shanghai and Guangzhou, China. The movie takes place around the 1980s. When the story starts discussing the mothers, it takes place in the 1950s. The flashbacks of the mothers take place sometime around the 1920s or 1940s.
While the scenery helps to provide the context in which the story unfolds, it is more through the cultural nuances of the mothers and their daughters that is truly at the core of the film. One of the main points is the emphasis on education in the film. Asian parents are known for pushing their children to achieve the highest possible marks, at the cost of nearly every other aspect of their lives. Play time is typically out of the question for many Asian parents, or so the stereotypes would say. The mothers in the “Joy Luck Club,” try to make their children as American as possible, so that they would have the best opportunities in life. This constant push that the children are receiving from their parents is a struggle, and the daughters found it difficult to live life in the ways that they wanted.

Film analysis example

  • Semiotic analysis, which focuses on the symbols and signs in the film and their meanings. A good essay should go beyond this and establish a relationship between those symbols, characters in the film, and the real world.
  • Narrative structure analysis, which concentrates on the storyline and its relevance to the themes and subject matter of the essay. Each event has its role to play in communicating the message that the director of a film would like his audience to get.
  • Contextual analysis, which stresses on the story in its environment. The writer is expected to go beyond the film itself and focus on the historical, religious, and cultural aspects that existed when it was written and how these influence the events of the storyline.
  • Mise-en-scene analysis, which deals with a discussion on the visual aspects of the film and why these aspects were chosen for inclusion in the story. In this case, the writer is expected to focus on the film’s components and why the director selected every character or visual, and the message they help bring out.

Therefore, as you plan on how to write an essay about a movie, you should be very clear on what type of analysis you intend to focus on. A careful review of the question questions will greatly help in understanding exactly which type of analysis is required in a particular essay.

Film analysis example
Women in many societies have been restricted to wife and mother roles. They are not supposed to be contrary to these roles but rather be submissive to their husbands. Rae is facing hindrance from both the government and the husband. If the government was in full support of Norma’s course, the authorities could not have subjected Rae to imprisonment. Instead, her plight for a creating a union should have been implemented.


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