TCF340/BordwellThompson/Narrative Form (Discussion)
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- How do Bordwell and Thompson (B/T) define "form" in its general sense? And how is film a "system"?
- Apply B/T's four principles of film form to Day for Night:
- Function: What function do Ferrand's dreams serve?
- Similarity and repetition: What is one motif that recurs in the film? (And what is a motif, according to B/T?)
- Difference and variation: How does the film make use of variations?
- Development: B/T note, "Another way to size up how a film develops formally is to compare the beginning with the ending." So, how would you say the beginning and ending of Day for Night signals the film's development?
- First shot:
- Last shot:
B/T define narrative form as "...a chain of events in cause-effect relationship occurring in time and space." Discuss/define each phrase of this definition, providing examples from Day for Night:
- a chain of events in cause-effect relationship
- occurring in time and space
Plot and story
- What does the word "diegesis" mean? (Pronounced die-eh-GEE-sis.)
- What is the difference between "plot" and "story", as B/T are using those terms?
- Describe the plot and the story of Day for Night. How do they differ in terms of temporal (i.e., time)
Classical Hollywood cinema
- What are the five or six principal characteristics of classical Hollywood cinema, according to B/T? List them.
- Individual characters as causal agents
- Change in characters
- Opposition that creates conflict
- Does Day for Night qualify as a classical film? Why or why not?
- David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson, Film Art: An Introduction, 9th ed. (New York: McGraw-Hill, 2010).