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Film Studies


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Table of Contents

Preface: What This Book Is-and What It's Not Introduction: Representation and Reality 1. Mise-en-Scene: Within the Image What Is Mise-en-Scene? The Shot Subject-Camera Distance-Why It Matters Camera Angle Space and Time on Film Composition Study Guide: Analyzing the Shot by Writing about the Image 2. Mise-en-Scene: Camera Movement Mobile Framing Types of Camera Movement Editing within the Shot Space and Movement Study Guide: Analyzing Camera Movement 3. Mise-en-Scene: Cinematography Motion Picture Photography Aspect Ratio: From 1:33 to Widescreen Aspect Ratio: Form and Meaning Lighting Three-Point Lighting Film Stocks: Super 8 to 70mm to Video Black, White, Gray, and Color A Word or Two about Lenses Study Guide: Analyzing Cinematography 4. Editing: From Shot to Shot Transitions Montage The Kuleshov Experiment Continuity Editing The 180-Degree System Shot/Reverse-Shot Pattern Study Guide: Analyzing Shot-to-Shot Editing 5. Sound A Very Short History of Film Sound Recording, Rerecording, Editing, and Mixing Analytical Categories of Film Sound Sound and Space Study Guide: Hearing Sound, Analyzing Sound 6. Narrative: From Scene to Scene Narrative Structure Story and Plot Scenes and Sequences Transitions from Scene to Scene Character, Desire, and Conflict Analyzing Conflict Study Guide: Analyzing Scene-to-Scene Editing 7. From Screenplay to Film Deeper into Narrative Structure Screenwriting: The Three Act Structure Segmentation: Form Segmentation: Meaning by A Segmentation of Inside Man Study Guide: Story Analysis and Segmentation 8. Filmmakers Film-a Director's Art? Authorship The Auteur Theory The Producer's Role Teamwork Study Guide: The Problem of Attribution 9. Performance Performance as an Element of Mise-en-Scene Acting Styles Stars and Character Actors Type and Stereotype Women as Types Acting in-and on-Film Publicity: Extra-Filmic Meaning Study Guide: Analyzing Acting 10. Genre What Is a Genre? Conventions, Repetitions, and Variations A Brief Taxonomy of Two Film Genres-the Western and the Horror Film Genre: The Semantic/Syntactic Approach Film Noir: A Case Study Film Noir: A Brief History Study Guide: Genre Analysis for the Introductory Student 11. Special Effects Beyond the Ordinary Optical and Mechanical Special Effects Computer-Generated Imagery (CGI) Study Guide: Effects and Meaning 12. Putting It Together: A Model 8- to 10-Page Paper How This Chapter Works "Introducing Tyler," by Robert Paulson Glossary Acknowledgments Index

Promotional Information

Ed Sikov is undeniably brilliant at explaining things--his style is unusually lucid. -- Robert Lang, University of Hartford Ed Sikov has written a film book that is both user friendly and genuinely helpful to anyone who is starting out in learning how to 'read' films. He explains in good, clear, and often witty language the basics of film analysis. His book bristles with helpful information and prose that allows information to be ingested painlessly--in fact pleasurably--by the student. -- John Simons, Colorado College

About the Author

Ed Sikov has taught at Haverford College, Colorado College, and Columbia University. He is the author of seven books, including On Sunset Boulevard: The Life and Times of Billy Wilder, Dark Victory: The Life of Bette Davis, Mr. Strangelove: A Biography of Peter Sellers, and Laughing Hysterically: American Screen Comedy of the 1950s. He lives in New York City.


[Sikov] has produced one of the most comprehensive and accessible texts of its type and it is likely to become a staple for introductory film studies curricula. Metapsychology Film Studies: An Introduction offers the clearest and most concise introduction to the field. PLAYBACK A valuable tool for the beginning film scholar... [Sikov] establishes a firm foundation on which to build for further film analysis and appreciation. Journal of Social and Human Sciences Engaging and affordable, Sikov's Film Studies: An Introduction is an ideal and concise textbook for professors to supplement with articles of their own choosing in order to introduce students to various cultural and ideological approaches to film analysis. -- Elisabeth Weis, Brooklyn College A wonderful introductory text. Sikov's Film Studies: An Introduction discusses film form in very clear and thoughtful ways while emphasizing the thematic and intellectual value of form, making an 'academic' topic deeper and more humane. Very highly recommended. -- George Butte, Colorado College Film Studies: An Introduction is a superb, remarkably efficient textbook. One of the best prose stylists in film studies, Sikov is witty and precise, providing a perfect model for the student looking to write better papers. -- Patrick Keating, author of Hollywood Lighting From the Silent Era to Film Noir

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