FILM ANALYSIS FRAMEWORK



Name _______________________________________ Date ____________


I. PRE-VIEWING TASKS

1. Basic Film Information (see www.folkstreams.net)


Title _________________________________________________________


Filmmaker ____________________________________ Year ___________


B&W _____ Color ______ Running Time _______________________



2. Self-Inventory Based on the title and synopsis, write briefly what you think the film will be about.


II. VIEWING TASKS

Like a folklorist or filmmaker who documents a cultural group or tradition, take notes as you view the film. This worksheet includes elements to look for. Also write questions and observations (I like, I wonder, etc.) and comments to help you remember what's going on in the film.


1. Narrator Is there a narrator or do people speak for themselves? Describe speakers' voices.

2. Setting(s) Notice both time and place, specific details someone might not see at first glance but that give greater insight into the film.


3. Main People Who are important people in the film? List as many details as you can about each.

4. Main Issues Are the issues related to nature, history, society, economics, a region, a cultural group, an individual? Explain how.

5. Techniques and Effects What techniques can you identify and how do they affect the mood and impact of the film?

Camera angles (looking down, up, or straight-on)

Camera moving or fixed

Still photos or images, if any

Soundtrack (voices, music, sounds)

Special effects

Point of view (whose?)

6. Vocabulary As you view the film, write words and expressions that are new to you or that you find important.


7. Metaphors/Imagery/Symbols Look for images and symbols in the physical scene and listen for words or phrases that sum up the film, that symbolize or serve as metaphors to convey meaning in the film.

III. POST-VIEWING TASKS

1. Self-Inventory Return to your pre-viewing self-inventory. How did the film differ from what you expected?


2. Summary Write a synopsis of the film. Include your opinions of the filmmaker's approach as well as the main topic. Address why you agree or disagree with the message of the film. How might a commercial filmmaker tell this story in a feature film?


3. Critique If one star means poor and four stars mean excellent, how many stars does this film rate? Explain your rating.


4. Discussion Prompts

What does this remind you of in your own life? Where is this topic/where are people like this in your life? Your community? In the world?

What is not represented, whose point of view is not included?

What contradictions or tensions do you sense?

What are the subtexts in addition to the main message?

What values are expressed?

What novel or short story does this film remind you of?

What do you want to ask the filmmaker? Someone in the film?

Make a storyboard of the film.