FS3 - coursework
small-scale research project requires you to
produce a presentation script (1000 – 1500 words)
The research will stem from on of the following topics:
Genre – this may focus on a single genre or a range
Technology – focusing on the impact or
development of a particular technology.
Institutional – this may focus on a national cinema
Auteur – focusing on the auteur, either
What’s Auteur all about?
Auteur theory was articulated in the 1950s by French film critics
including Francois Truffaut (later went on to direct)
The concept describes the mark of a film director also known
as the author who has control over:
thematic or stylistic consistencies
personal aesthetic vision
a defined view of the world
and a significant degree of control over production.
The works of an auteur director are stamped by the personality
and unique artistic vision of its creator
Their films are recognisable and distinctive because of their
In auteur films, it is the director who controls the artistic
statement, takes credit for the film and is responsible for
attracting the audience.
Who can you name
Can you think of any directors who have very
E.g. M. Night Shyamalan who often writes,
produces, directs and acts in his very mysterious
films such as:
The Sixth Sense
Lady in the Water
consider his Auteur status to be:
the master of mystery and suspense
his films play with the audience's nerves
sexual or tabooed areas assume central or implicit
places in his work
there is a persistent element of black comedy,
Hitchcock was influenced by the German
Expressionists, and admired their ability "to express
ideas in purely visual terms“
It is this visual expression of thought and psychology
that Hitchcock achieves throughout his films.
Hitchcock and cinematic
technical signature includes:
use of camera viewpoints
soundtrack to build suspense
He also places great focus on the creation
of set pieces where he is able to exercise
his talent for detail and suspense.
Rear Window - MacGuffin
Rear Window makes great use of Hitchcock’s concept of
Something pursued by characters in the film but having little
meaning to the audience or relevance to the film except
as a plot contrivance.
Common examples are:
a source of power,
a potential threat,
a mysterious but highly desired item or object,
or simply something that is entirely unexplained.
The MacGuffin is common in films, especially
Usually the MacGuffin is the central focus of
the film in the first act, and then declines in
importance as the struggles and motivations
of characters play out.
It may come back into play at the climax of
the story, but sometimes the MacGuffin is
actually forgotten by the end of the story.
What is this film’s MacGuffin and how is it
used? Here is a hint: in this film the MacGuffin
is an action, not a physical object.
Rear Window - Voyeurism
recurring psychological theme in
Hitchcock’s films is voyeurism—
deriving pleasure, particularly sexual
pleasure, from watching rather than
this theme is more overt in Rear Window
than in other Hitchcock films.
Rear Window is filmed entirely from the
apartment and mostly Jeffries POV.