Film and Media Studies 46: Summer 2022, Prof: Felando
PAPER ASSIGNMENT #1
DUE: Thursday, July 7 – hard copy @ start of class
No extensions. No exceptions.
LENGTH: 4 pages
FORMAT: typed, double-spaced, 1-inch margins, no larger than 12-point type; Times or Times New Roman only.
Number your pages
PROMPT: As you know from class and the reading assignments, filmmakers have many options for storytelling and
narrative construction. Choices about order, duration, emphasis, and tone play an important part in how we come to know
what we know. The first paper assignment focuses on the process of narration. Review the ideas presented in the assigned
reading: Chapter 3, “Narrative Form,” and apply them to the film listed below.
Questions to consider, include:
How is the story told?
What is the relationship between plot and story in the film?
What is the range of story information? Is it restricted or unrestricted?
What is the hierarchy of knowledge?
Your analysis should consider how the form of the film relates to its content, and you should develop relevant and
persuasive evidence by way of specific examples from the film itself to support your analysis. Review the analysis of
Citizen Kane in the assigned reading as a guide for discussing these issues (particularly the questions offered in that
Though it is not required, your analysis will be significantly enhanced by the preparation of a plot segmentation
(see the plot segmentation of Citizen Kane and/or The Wizard of Oz in the assigned reading).
Be very careful to use plot summary sparingly and to present your analytical claims in a precise and coherent
thesis. In the body of your paper, state your claims and support them with well-chosen evidence and examples from the
film. Important: the paper should be your analysis; in other words, do not consult outside sources, including
reviews/criticism and/or filmmaker commentary or extras.
Also important, your introduction should not refer to films in general – you should immediately focus on the film
and your thesis.
ASSIGNMENT FILM: The following title is from the anthology series, Black Mirror
• U.S.S Callister (Toby Haynes, 2017)
The link is on GauchoSpace in the top block
Papers will be evaluated, in part, based on the following:
–Clarity of writing and organization
— Strength of analysis and claims
— Quality and specificity of support/examples
— How carefully the analysis follows the paper guidelines and requirements
GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS: Follow these instructions carefully
• Do not define the terms in your essays–instead use the terms and concepts in ways that demonstrate your understanding
of their meanings and how to use them.
• Do not give plot synopses. Assume the reader is very familiar with the film.
• Write in the present tense: a film’s action takes place now, even in the flashbacks.
• Use the characters’ names not the names of the actors who play them. For example: Shrek, not Mike Myers. Do not
include the actors’ names at all in your paper.
• Italicize film titles. Do not capitalize, use quotation marks, or underline titles.
• When you first refer to a film, note the director and year of the film’s release; for example: Black Mirror (Colm
• Grammar, spelling, and punctuation will be considered in your grade.
• Review the “Academic Honesty” guidelines on the course website and consult your TA or the professor if you have any
• Please consult with me or your TA if you have any questions or would like to discuss your paper or ideas for the
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