Chapter 3: Types of Movies NarrativeA narrative tells a story. It can be a joke, acommercial, a newspaper article or aanecdote.Narrative is a way of structuring fictional orfictional stories presented in narrativefilms, a concept we will talk more about inChapter 4.
Types of Movies:• Narrative Movies – tell a straight-forward story• Documentary movies– records reality for the edification of the audience with four different approaches: factual, instructional, persuasive and propaganda film.• Experimental—non-commercial, art films that venture outside popular film conventions
What’s a Convention?• Film conventions include aspects of storytelling that feature recurring themes, situations, settings, character types and narrative formulas.• Themes are unifying ideas that film expresses through narrative or imagery• Setting is where a movie’s action is located• Presentation is often the peculiar cinematic language of a certain genre that communicate tone and atmosphere• Character types populate certain kinds of films• Story Formulas are the way certain kind of stories are structured
Gangster – deals primarily with the criminalenterprise of certain disenfranchised ethnicgroups e.g. Italians, Irish, Jews, et al
Film Noir– mystery crime genre, filmed with alot of heavy contrasting shadows
Science Fiction– imagines life in the future orin an alternate reality
Horror– themes include the living dead, psychoticmurders and urban legends of the criminally insane
The Western– tales of Americans and otherswho conquered the early American West
The Musical —stories told with lost of singingand dancing to push the story along
Our Viewing: “Election”Election is a film written and directed by Alexander Payne adaptedfrom a novel by Tom Perota. Alexander Payne is a prolific directorknown for his quirky style and subject matter. He talks about that abit here in an interview you can see in the enhanced text version ofthis lecture.Author Tom Perrotta has seen many of his works adapted to film.His reflections on post-modern America endear him to readers andlend themselves to cinema which he talks about .In Election, Payne uses close-ups, super-imposition and dramaticstaging to great affect, and music is critical to his mis en scene. Thefilm stars Matthew Broderick as teacher Mr. McAlister and ReeseWitherspoon as student Tracy Flick in an allegory about politics,class, ambition, karma and Chinese food.