Film Papers are analytical reflections. This means that students should undertake critical reviews of a film that includes both a thesis and themes and content from the textbook and lectures. Successful papers focus on a theme or series of themes from the film that connect to the course content. For example, this might be the role of cash crop production and slave resistance in 12 Years a Slave, capitalism and labor organization in Matewan, or fascism and genocide in Schindler’s List.
Papers should possess a clear argument, and be written with a coherent structure.
THESE ARE NOT FILM ONLY SUMMARIES (I have already seen these movies, and I know what happens. Do not simply re-state the events of the film.)
Film Paper #2: Schindler’s List (1993)
Anti-Semitism: There are numerous examples, but try and explain how the film depicts anti-Semitism as being at the heart of Nazi ideology.
Nazism: How are Nazis depicted in the film? Are they shown mostly as ordinary people or as supervillains? Why do you think Nazi ideas appealed to so many Germans?
Survival: What survival strategies do the various characters employ in order to survive the ghetto and the forced labor camps? How much agency do the Jews possess? In what ways do they wield agency and in what ways are they powerless?
Heroism: Is Oskar Schindler a hero or an antihero? Explain your response.
Color: Why do you think the film is presented in black and white? A few scenes are shot in color. Which are they and why were they depicted this way?
Power: What does power mean to Schindler? How is his notion of power different from that of Amon Goeth’s?
Survivors: Why does Steven Spielberg show us the real-life people portrayed in the film at the end? What kind of significance does that gesture hold?
Film Paper Criteria:
The Film Paper will constitute 30% of your total course grade.
Copies of the film reflections will be due in the “Assignments” folder. Film reflections must be a minimum of 6 pages (double-spaced, 12-point font). Plagiarism will result in an automatic F zero for the assignment.
Does not meet minimum length requirement: -10 points minimum
Does not include direct information from the textbook: -10 points minimum
Only consists of summary: -10 points minimum
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