Katie E. Sturdevant
December 17, 2009
Film can often times take us beyond our own imaginations, just as easily as reading literature. Film can bring literature to life; it turns our visions of “Neverland” and “Fantastica” into reality. It is as though our eyes can finally experience the words we once read on a page. Films can be simply viewed, or they can be analyzed for a heightened understanding. Therefore, this essay will discuss what makes a film efficient through the analysis of film.
In order to analyze a film, we must minimize our presumptions and prejudgments of a film. For example, we have to recognize that we might be drawn towards ...view middle of the document...
For example, in Saving Private Ryan, (Spielberg, 1998) we might first believe that it was simply a testimonial in sacrifices and hardships within war. However, when we look closer at the recollection of Private Ryan, as he visits the gravesites, we start to think perhaps there is a greater theme. The theme would be amplifying the necessity of war, but to be very cautious when going to war. War can cause even more damage, so we have to be sure that war justifies the means. World War II jilted a generation of men, some of which died, and some who never completely left the battlefield even in their old age.
A movie can prove to be efficient through universality. This can be found in Romeo and Juliet (Zeffirelli, 1968). People of all ages can understand the strength of young love. However, people can see how family, obligations, and basic life can get in the way of what you truly want. The tragedy of living without the one you love is also a devastating emotion understood by most. For human beings have the emotional desire to love and be loved. Moreover, this is a story that will have lasting power as the years go by. On the other hand, films with no universal themes can have just as much value, especially if it has “some relevance to our own personal experience (Boggs & Petrie, 2008. p. 36).”
Plot can be a useful element in how we analyze and interpret the meaning of a film. The plot usually must be united and credible. The plot has to be interesting and intriguing, in order for the viewers to spend at least an hour and a half of their time watching the film. The movie, Taken (Morel, 2008), finds unity through great suspense. Bryan Willis, played by Liam Neeson, has to use the tools he learned as a spy to find his kidnapped daughter, before it is too late. It encompasses suspense and action, yet has an underlying emotion of the love a father has for his daughter.
Theme can be further developed through the film’s characters. A film that encompasses how social stratification such as Wuthering Heights (Wyler, 1939) could interfere with whom we love. Cathy was determined to marry up, despite her feelings for a lowly orphan, Heathcliff. Cathy has an internal conflict that is enhanced with the external conflict we see with Heathcliff. He is constantly challenging her true emotions for him and for class. If Cathy chooses her heart, which is her love for Heathchliff, it will be all she could ever need. Assuming that we can cure her need for the physical aspects of wealth. However, she allows an inner struggle of what others will think take over. If she were to follow after someone who worked in a field, one that had no money, she would be equal to that low status. However, if she were to marry Edgar, she would have the class that she desired. When she realizes that she would rather follow her heart, it is too late.
Just as theme can decide if a film is efficient, visual design is also important. It can stimulate the emotional effect and overall...