New Narratives – Week 8 – Film Discussion

Today Yuan gave us a lecture based on discussion on our chosen narratives.

How do you group films? –

How well the film would potentially do in the box office “Directors collection”.

The duration of the movie “how long will the feature be and will it be worth the time”.

The production of the movie “who will do what in the aspects of creating?”.

The style of the movie “will it be digital, traditional animation or completely filmed on camera?”

How does animation fit?

There is a lot of cross pollination in movies nowadays such as filmography and animation “CGI” typically within Horrors, Thrillers or Sci-Fi movies.

Types of Film

Film Genres –

One popular way of grouping fiction films is by genre, such as westerns, musicals, war films, science fiction and so on.

Understanding Genre –

The word is originally french, and it simply means “kind” or “type”.

When we speak of film genres, were indicating certain types of movies. the Science fiction film, the comedy, the musical, the western – those are some genres of fictional storytelling cinema.

What film Genres do you know?








In some genres the films share subjects or themes.

(For Example?):

Sourced from this interesting article- 

Man vs Nature: 2012

Man vs himself (Psychological): Saw

The loss of innocence: Scorned

Revenge: I spit on your grave

Death as a part of life: Lion King

The battle: My sisters keeper

Individual vs society: Mean Girls

Triumph over adversary: Star Wars

Love conquers all: Notebook

Racial discriminate matters:  12 years of slavery

Sometimes, subject matter or theme is not central to defining genres (For example?):

Cabin in the woods (2012)

Tuck and Dale vs evil (2010)

Sometimes a film seems to mix more genres.:

Star Wars-

Lord Of The Rings-

The Hobbit-

The Hunger Games-

Sub Genres

Some genre labels are very broad, so its useful to have an idea of sub-genres to refer to distinct and fairly long lasting types within genre.

The usefulness of genre categories?

I feel this is typically to make things easier for those who are looking for a particular movie to watch or to hone in on their interests for entertainment purposes, for example – if i was in the mood to be spooked i would in turn look into Horror movies or maybe some psychological, maybe i would be in the mood to watch something to make me laugh then i would simply look for a comedy.

Also i think its something for us, as viewers to relate to – maybe more with the likes of psychological movies and comedies, it could also be useful for us to gain a new understanding of the potential subject used within a genre (educational movies or documentaries).

Genre conventions and iconography:

  1. Story Formulas: The way a movies story is structured-the plot.
  2. Theme: A unifying idea that the film expresses through its narrative or imagery.
  3. Character Types: Genre films are often populated by specific character “types”.
  4. Setting: Where a movies action is located and how the environment is portrayed.
  5. Presentation: Many genres feature certain elements of cinematic language that communicate tone and atmosphere.

As a visual medium, cinema can also define genres through conventional iconography. A genres iconography consists of recurring symbolic images that carry meaning from film to film.

Clip example Yuan used in lecture 

Another example

Audiences expect the genre film to offer something familiar, but they demand something new as well. so a film can revise or even reject the conventions associated with its genre. By blending or varying or even rejecting genre conventions. filmmakers force viewers to reset their expectations and engage with the film in fresh ways.

Another example used, Bugsy Malone – not sure what to think of this, but dated and im not too fond on musicals especially gangster musicals… But hey not every movie is for everyone, right?

The Three Main Genres –

Western: Is partly based on historical reality, since in the american west there were cowboys, outlaws, settlers and tribes

Horror: Is most recognizable by the emotional effect it tires to around. The Horror film aims to shock, disgust, repel- in short, to horrify.

The Musical: Tells its story using characters that express themselves using song and/ or dance.

Documentary: an educational film that gives facts and understanding to the viewer, personally i typically watch animal documentaries that give and insight of how particular animals live within their inhabitants. Also movie companies make documentaries on how some of their movies are made.

Experimental Film –

Experiment film is willfully nonconformist. In opposition to dominant or mainstream cinema, some filmmakers set out to create film that challenge normal notions of what a movies can show and how it can show it.

“Una Breve Storia del Cinema – Il cinema delle avanguardie:
Ballet Mécanique (1923-4) is a Dadaist post-Cubist art film conceived, written, and co-directed by the artist Fernand Léger in collaboration with the filmmaker Dudley Murphy (with cinematographic input from Man Ray). It has a musical score by the American composer George Antheil. However, the film premiered in silent version on 24 September 1924 at the Internationale Ausstellung neuer Theatertechnik (International Exposition for New Theater Technique) in Vienna presented by Frederick Kiesler. It is considered one of the masterpieces of early experimental filmmaking.…” – YouTube Video Description 

“MAKE IT STOP!” – Micheal Bass

“Associative montage.
Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use.” – YouTube Video Description

Not a lot of logic to be frank but interesting nevertheless.

 The Animated Film –

Animated film s are distinguished from live action ones by the kinds of work done at the production stage. Any sort of film that can be shot live can be made using animation.

Types of traditional animation:

Drawn animation, cels, full animation, limited animation, directed animation, cut outs, clay animation, model or puppet animation or pixillation.

Types of Computer Animation:

CGI, 3D computer animation and 2D animation

Very exciting short, i loved how hybrid this was and totally surprised i haven’t seen this yet!

Lovely short that uses 3D and 2D elements, i also see they used copyrighted music that belongs to a video game… tut tut


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