How to write your MOVIE ANALYSIS

How to write your MOVIE ANALYSIS.

How to write your MOVIE ANALYSIS

Please note that this is NOT a review; please do not simply retell the movie’s plot.  Use the following structure to write your analysis. You do not need to answer ALL the following questions; choose the most relevant ones.

Paragraph 1: Name of movie, date produced, key actors, and any other (if relevant) factors about production.

Paragraph 2: Brief summary of plot (no more than 1 paragraph; limit yourself to 5-7 sentences).  Focus on a few relevant details; do not provide a “this, then this, then this . . .” summary.

Paragraph 3: Connect to the historical content of this class.  Find at least 2 outside sources that corroborate the historical context of this movie.  Do not use IMDB (or similar sites) as a source; instead, use legitimate historical information to help you determine how factual this movie actually is You may reference the primary sources we use in class; that is, in fact, a VERY good idea (yes, that is a strong hint).

Paragraph 4: Recommendation. Based on your experience with this movie, would you recommend it to a future student?  Did this movie help you understand this era in history?  Did it present a different view of a historical event?  Did it personalize history for you?  If the movie is old (and many of this list were made prior to the 1990s), did that alter your view of it?  Older films do not offer many special effects; did this encourage a more careful look or listen to the plot? Or, did the lack of realism detract from the plot or dialogue?

Suggested movies — if there are multiple versions, choose any, but avoid cartoon or Disney versions. If you would like to view a movie not on this list, please see me.  I have selected FEATURE films, not documentaries, for you to analyze, since I am asking you to make connections to the factual narrative we have been developing in this class. . In other words, you may not review a documentary. 

  • Frankenstein
  • All Quiet on the Western Front
  • Bridge of Spies
  • Les Miserables 
  • Movies based on the novels of Charles Dickens or Jane Austen
  • Anna Karenina
  • War and Peace
  • Moulin Rouge (1950s version)
  • Fiddler on the Roof
  • Mrs. Brown
  • The Madness of King George III
  • Age of Innocence
  • Chariots of Fire
  • 55 Days to Peking
  • Zulu
  • The African Queen
  • Passage to India
  • Gandhi
  • Out of Africa
  • Gallipoli
  • Stalin (with Robert Duvall)
  • Reds
  • Animal Farm
  • Das Boot
  • Cross of Iron
  • Schindler’s List 
  • Boy in the Striped Pajamas
  • The White Rose or Sophie Scholl: the final days (both deal with the same topic)
  • The Spy Who Came in from the Cold
  • I am David
  • The Italian
  • Life is Beautiful
  • Sarajevo
  • Goodbye, Lenin
  • Saving Private Ryan (but be careful . . . don’t make your analysis all about America!)

How to write your MOVIE ANALYSIS

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