Film history essay. Student essay rubric
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Another study of a director I love. Every time I write a book on a director,I try to give it at least two strata: one for readers interested in that director,and another addressing broader issues. For Dreyer, the plan was to understandthe history of international film style through the work of a director who wenthis own way. For Ozu I was more ambitious: I went for three layers.
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First, the book sketches a history of film interpretation, from the work of early critics through the rise of academic film studies in the 1960s and 1970s, ending in the great quantity of interpretive work that emerged in the 1980s. The second part of the book tries to answer the question of how interpretation works, treating it as a skill which can be mastered. I argue that meaning is indeed made, through a constructive process. Critics build up inferences and deploy the persuasive powers of language to arrive at conclusions permitted within the institution of criticism. My approach, then, tries to be at once psychological (drawing on cognitive psychology), social (treating cognitive schemata as socially approved meaning-making processes), and rhetorical.