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critique most be on the western film The Searchers by John Ford

critique most be on the western film The Searchers by John Ford

Throughout this course, you have been compiling a blog and writing essays that analyze various

elements of film such as theme, cinematic techniques, and genre. It is now time to combine those

elements into a comprehensive analysis of one movie.

You will be completing this assignment in two stages: for the first stage (1500 to 1800 words), you

will analyze an entire movie; in the second stage (300 to 600 words), you will reflect on how you

analyzed the movie as well as how your ability to analyze film in general has evolved.

You are encouraged to incorporate writing from your Week Two Assignment and your Week Three

Assignment if (a) you have reflected on the instructor’s feedback, (b) you have revised the relevant

parts of the essays accordingly, and (c) the essays discuss the same film that you discuss here.

Stage 1: Analysis
For this stage, you will be analyzing a movie selected from the AFI’s 10 top 10 list. The film you

choose can be one that you have previously analyzed in this course. The analysis portion of your paper

should be 1500 to 1800 words in length. You should analyze the film through the lens of one of the broad

theories you have learned about in class (auteur theory, genre theory, formalist theory). Your analysis

must address four main areas (contextual information, story / plot, aesthetic choices, and

social/personal impact) and how these areas work together to develop the theme of the movie. As you

construct your analysis, assume that your reader is not familiar with this film. Use your analysis to

explain why your reader why they should watch this film.

In addition to the film you are analyzing, you must use three scholarly sources to support your

arguments. Refer to the ENG225 Research Guide for guidance. List these sources on your references

page and provide in-text citations for quoted, paraphrased, or summarized content in the body of your

paper. Cite your sources according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.

Your analysis must address these four components:
Contextual Information – In this area, you will provide some of the basic identifying information of the

film. This includes:
Director, cinematographer, major actors/actresses. Be sure to describe their roles in the overall

design process.
Year of release
Type of film (blockbuster, indie, documentary, etc.)
Story/Plot – In this area, you should offer a brief summary of the film, and then show how it was

deployed in the narrative structure of the film. Explain the difference between the film’s story and its

plot. This area can be addressed as a separate paragraph, or can be threaded throughout your analysis

of the film.
Aesthetic Choices – In this area, you will assess the efficacy of specific techniques and design

elements employed in the film as they apply to the overarching narrative and theme of the film. These

elements include:
Mise en scène (lighting, sound, composition of frame, costuming)
Editing (cuts and transitions, shots used, angles)
Technology (Analyze the impact of any notable technological effects: film stock, targeted release

venue, special effects, etc.)
Social/Personal Impact – In this area, you will critically address the following questions:
What impact did this film have on society (politically or culturally, positive or negative)? The impact

can be as major as inspiring political or social changes or as minor as inspiring the production of toys or

How did society affect this film (i.e., what currents in society led to the creation of the film)?
If you are unable to find any information about the social impact of the film, explain the personal

impact it has had on you.

Note: Not every bullet point under the four listed components will necessarily apply to your movie.

However, you will still need to discuss each of the four main components thoroughly, which means that

you may need to explain a concept even if it can’t be directly applied to your movie.

Your paper should be organized around a thesis statement that clarifies what you will attempt to

accomplish in your paper, and how you will proceed. Additionally, you must conclude with a

restatement of the thesis and a conclusion paragraph.

Stage 2: Reflection
After completing your movie analysis, you will reflect on the analysis process and how you have

learned to more thoroughly analyze film as well as how rigorous study of film enhances your

development as a student and thinker. In this 300- to 600-word reflection, review your initial post from

the “Post Your Introduction” discussion in Week One, and consider how your ability to analyze movies

has changed or grown. Append your reflection to the analysis portion of your paper. Your reflection

should be personal and exploratory in nature.

Address the following questions in your reflection:
What can be gained through analyzing film?
How has this changed how you view movies?
How are you able to use film theory and criticism to find and interpret meaning in movies?
In what ways has this course changed your understanding of how movies are related to society?
What skills have you developed during this course, and how might those skills be applied to your

major, profession, and/or life?

Writing the Final Film Critique
The Final Film Critique:
Must be 1800 to 2400 words in length, comprised of a 1500- to 1800-word film analysis and a 300- to

600-word reflection.
Must include a separate title and reference page, and be formatted according to APA style as

outlined in Ashford Writing Center.
Must include a title page with the following:
Title of paper
Student’s name
Course name and number
Instructor’s name
Date submitted
Must begin with an introductory paragraph that has a succinct thesis statement.
Must address the topic of the paper with critical thought.
Must end with a conclusion that reaffirms your thesis.
Must use at least three scholarly sources (reviews, articles, or book chapters) other than the

textbook to support your points. Refer to the ENG225 Research Guide for guidance.
Must document all sources in APA style, as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
Must include a separate reference page, formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford

Writing Center.


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