Media Aesthetics Notes

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September 19th
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Film Form; Film & Critical Analysis – Chapter 11
* Step 1: Develop a thesis
* What is interesting, disturbing or noteworthy?
* Does that aspect illustrate a concept from lecture w clarity? Is it a good example of something we talked about in class? * Did it have a unique effect on you?
* Step 2: Segment the film
* What features stuck out the most (given that weeks class topic)? * How are those features related to the film as a whole? Pay attention to details and how they affect the film * Step 3: Identify the outstanding instances of technique * Understand the techniques/concepts

* Note specific examples of techniques
* Types of lighting, angle, shots, narrative, style, etc.

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September 26th
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Styles of Film
* Two major directions – realistic and formalistic
* Directions or “types” are defines by form, not content

Three Styles of Film/Media:
* Realistic (focused on content, portraying as real life) * Classicism (in-between)
* Formalism (manipulation, taking out of reality)

Realism:
* Reproduce reality with minimum distortion-objective mirror * Major concern is with content, rather than form
* Subject matter is supreme
* Documentary film
* Imagine as we’re watching it as we would see it through our own eyes * Ex: Big Brother – raw, unscripted, stagnant cameras, not playing w manipulation * Would never see something like a birds eye view of crowds of people, because we would never see that in real life. If we were watching a conversation happening it would be from one angle Formalism:

* Deliberately stylized and distort images (special effects, explosions, zooming in/out, narrative structure: in real life happens in temporal order as it would happen to us, in these movies jumps around in time) * Wants no one to mistake manipulated image for real thing (not pretending that this is reality, want to show the manipulation) * Concerned with form rather than content

* Referred to as expressionist (self-expression, trying to create connections between stories/events that if watched over & over it has deeper meaning) * Avant-garde cinema
Classical:
* What most fictional films/shows are classified as (we would never live like this but its fun to watch, drama, comedy, group of characters that the similarities can relate to your life but also an element that the story is manipulated that wouldn’t be reality) * Films are strong in story, star (someone we identify), and production values (summer block busters, high financial investment in production because high financial return) * Clearly defined plot, conflict, rising climax, and resolution/closure * Avoids extremes of realism and formalism (wouldn’t see camera work that seems natural, but wouldn’t have random objects on the screen) (realistic enough but also fantasy)

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Narrative as a Formal System – Chapter 3

I. Principles of Narrative Construction:
* Plot & Story
* Cause-Effect
* Time
* Space
* Patterns of development
II. Flow of Story Information: Narration
* Range of Story Information
* Depth of Story Information
* Narrator

Narrative Form
* Most common in fictional media, but can be nonfictional too (ex: Bachelor – what’s going to happen next week suspense) * Identify because stories are all around us
* What is narrative? Narrative is a chain of events linked by cause and effect and occurring in time (how is this constructed…chronological? Jumping from times?) and space (location, extras in background, cars, etc)

Components of Narrative Form
* Plots and Stories
* Story is the subject matter or raw...
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