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Film Research Guide: COMM-120 Signature Assignment

Recommended Resources

Print Film Books on Reserve in Library

Ask for these titles at the library's Circulation Desk. They are filed by class - COMM-120.

Film Research Tips

Tips for finding articles

  • Use the advanced search mode so that you can search multiple terms at once
  • Think of related words you could try in different combinations.
    • For example: "western films" AND gender
  • Search Academic Search Premier, Literature Resource Center, and  ProQuest Historical Newspapers: New York Times for criticism and reviews of your film/director.
  • To read the whole article, look for a button that says PDF Full Text or HTML Full Text. Sometimes you'll see a link that says Full Text Finder. You can click this to pull up articles in other databases.

 

Tips for finding books

  • Think generally when you use the catalog.
    • For instance, a book about Science Fiction films may not include your specific director or film but would give you background about the genre.
  • The library  owns many books on specific directors, so be sure to also look for him/her/them, too.
  • You don't have to read the whole book to use it as a source! Look at the table of contents or index and jump to the chapter/pages that relate to your topic. To search the contents of ebooks, use the Search within book feature.
  • To read e-books off-campus, you'll need to use your Carroll email and login.

Vampire genre: A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night

In addition to the following, search Academic Search Premier and Literature Resource Center for more resources. Check out the Film Research Tips box above for ideas on how to find articles. You may also check for articles in The Film Genre Reader IV (see link in Recommended Resources above.)

Horror: Get Out

In addition to the following, search Academic Search Premier and Literature Resource Center for more resources. Check out the Film Research Tips box above for ideas on how to find articles. You may also check for articles in The Film Genre Reader IV (see link in Recommended Resources above.)

Signature Assignment Overview

Prompt:

  • In a 1000-word essay, analyze a film that both draws upon and challenges genre conventions, with analysis of the film’s formal elements and an original interpretation grounded in the film’s social, cultural, or historical context. You will also write a 350-500-word reflection (three – four paragraphs, double-spaced.)

Film Choices:

  • Horror/Creature: The Host (2006) Bong Joon Ho, South Korea
  • Horror/Vampire: A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014) Ana Lily Amirpour, United States (in Farsi)
  • Horror: Get Out (2017) Jordan Peele, United States
  • Crime/Noir: Devil in a Blue Dress (1995) Carl Franklin, United States
  • Western/Wagon Train: Meek's Cut Off (2010) - Kelly Reichardt, United States

Essay Tips (see full assignment for more details)

  • Screen at least two of the films and choose the one.
  • Write a “screening notes” response on the film you have chosen.
  • Provide peer feedback on three classmates’ screening notes, as assigned.
  • Read feedback and develop a working thesis statement for your essay making a clear point about the film’s formal elements in light of its genre and cultural context.

Source Requirements:

  • Cite at least two academic/scholarly sources for this assignment using the library research guide and the library resources highlighted in class: academic eBooks and articles from library databases. You may use IMDB, interviews with the director or cast, and movie reviews for background and audience reception as extra sources but not in place of academic or scholarly sources.
  • Cite your sources by creating a MLA 9th ed. Works Cited list as the final page of your essay.

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Other Contacts:

Western genre: Meek’s Cutoff

In addition to the following, search Academic Search Premier and Literature Resource Center for more resources. Check out the Film Research Tips box above for ideas on how to find articles. You may also check for articles in The Film Genre Reader IV (see link in Recommended Resources above.)

Film Noir: Devil in a Blue Dress

In addition to the following, search Academic Search Premier and Literature Resource Center for more resources. Check out the Film Research Tips box above for ideas on how to find articles. You may also check for articles in The Film Genre Reader IV (see link in Recommended Resources above.)

NOTE: Be certain that your sources are about the film not the novel it's based on.

Korean cinema: The Host

In addition to the following, search Academic Search Premier and Literature Resource Center for more resources. Check out the Film Research Tips box above for ideas on how to find articles. You may also check for articles in The Film Genre Reader IV (see link in Recommended Resources above.)