The theory is still tossed around today, with many people trying to add rules on how many movies the director must make and whether or not the director can also be the writer. But no one cares. Feminist film theory is a film criticism derived from feminist politics and feminist theory. The best way to summarize Feminist Film Theory is this: Most movies are made by men and controlled by men.
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This can be applied to anything. From Tarantino to Welles. Rest in Peace, Agnes Varda. Feminist Film Theory is alive and well today and has even transcended scholars into pop culture with the Bechdel Test. The Bechdel test asks whether a work of fiction features at least two women who talk to each other about something other than a man.
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- Gay, Lesbian, and Queer Cinema!
In recent years, people have also used the clarification that both women must be named. Bechdel credited the idea to a friend, Liz Wallace, and the writings of Virginia Woolf. After the test became more widely discussed in the s, some variants and tests inspired by it have been introduced. Genre Studies is probably the broadest of these Film Theories. It breaks down films into their genre and then analyzes what tropes or themes show up over and over.
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Then Genre Studies Theorists try to see if those themes mean something about the world or time in which they occurred. How is the damsel in distress used and subverted in the Action Genre? Why is sex punished in horror films?
Understanding Film Theory: An Essential Guide
Queer Theory came about in the early s. Like Feminist Film, it breaks films down from the perspective of how they originated. By breaking this barrier down, queer theory can show the limitations of that model and work to undo the norm. For more on Queer Theory, check out this breakdown from Film Reference. As you read this post I hope you understand how and why Film Theory matters. There are many places a degree in Film Theory can take you.
Mine landed me at No Film School. Here are some other places where a good base of Film Theory. If you went to Film School or took a Media Studies course in college you probably already know about this path. Most Film Theorists are college professors. They teach all over the world and have a vast array of specialties. My favorite Professor in college recently wrote a book on Italian American portraits of Masculinity in Film and Television. The nice part here is you can find and chase your niche. Sure, you have to go to school for a long time, get your doctorate, search a job, beg for tenure, and deal with college kids, but people seem to love it….
Are you the person your friends go to before Rotten Tomatoes? Maybe a career in Film Criticism is right for your future. As we mentioned before.
You can comment on how the lighting changes the tone. Or you could even make a YouTube channel where you blow all that up and focus on nitpicks. The last thing you want to do is be in a general meeting or a pitch and not know your stuff. Producers are going to ask for visual references. Which means you can never question the validity of any other conspiracy theory on the grounds of not having enough evidence or, you know, common sense. I recommend adding an "essential reading" section to the top of nofilmschool. Really solid, comprehensive writeup.
Do you have this Theory of Filmmaking available for download? Or perhaps an App..? Skip to main content. No Film School. April 1, Basic knowledge of Film Theory could be your ticket to making a compelling argument, a classic film, or winning at Jeopardy. So read on! Sometimes you want to say more about a film or TV show.
Gay, Lesbian, and Queer Cinema
What Is Film Theory? So how does one analyze a film or TV show? Film Criticism: Film Criticism picks apart movies. Film History: Film History chronicles the journey of cinema from its start to the present day. How to read a film: So you pop your Blu-Ray into the player, and you're ready to get started. But how can you tell what they want you to feel? Roger Ebert , often credited as the man who brought criticism to the masses, uses this cheat sheet to break down a film: " In simplistic terms: Right is more positive, left more negative.
Let's go back to the list Film Theorists use to analyze and break them down one by one. Types Of Films There are three main types of films. Realism: This type of film focuses on the real. Characteristics : Nonprofessional actors with exceptions No special effects On location sets and props Minimal editing Natural lighting Documentary-style Realism strives to show the real world for what it is.
Classical: This falls between the two extremes of Realism and Formalism. Therefore, some theoretical background on the question of genre is necessary but also on queerness and gender. As will be shown, both starting points of analysis are useful in a gender-critical reading of the film, and will reinforce each other. Often, it is used synonymously with LGBT, which stands for: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender. Queer theory as an academic sub- discipline or field of research builds on assertions brought forth by feminist criticism, such as the performativity, non-fixity and non-bipolarity of sexual identification, the difference between sex and gender the former being a biological state, the other a performative and social act , and a general interest in laying bare patterns of power relationships and heteronormativity cf.
White , Doty In its initial and main form, gazing at others is an activity, while the object remains passive cf. Mulvey These two strands of pleasure in looking, then, are related but also create a tension for the spectator between losing and reinforcing his or her ego.
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- Understanding Film Theory: An Essential Guide.
Mulvey further identifies woman as traditionally being the passive objects to be looked at, while the position of the active looker-on is usually male cf. But however pleasant women in film are to look at, they are also threatening to men — from a Freudian perspective — because of their lack of a penis. This absence of a penis is especially important in the case of Brandon, who, one may argue, is eventually murdered for exactly this reason.
Indeed, this is a necessary background for this paper since the particular representation of queerness and gender can only be understood fully with regard to certain generic conventions. Tom Ryall f traces the usage of genre back to the s, and the s in critical discourse, respectively. Papers and reading assignments are due on the date and by the time indicated in the syllabus; lateness will inevitably impact your grade and revisions for re-grading will not be accepted. Feel free to talk to me about any special circumstances. I do not tolerate any form of plagiarism, and depending on the severity of the plagiarism you may be asked to drop the class.
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You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. Queer Literature and Film Skip to content. List of readings and films: Rachilde, Monsieur Venus. Modern Language Association of America, Broadview, ISBN Delta Publishing, Mariner Books, Leontine Sagan, 98 min.
Looking for Langston UK , dir.
Isaac Julien, 42 min. Jennie Livingston, 78 min. Cheryl Dunye, 90 min. Velvet Goldmine USA , dir.