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Film Buff Reviews Stuff: A Film Review Blog

Description

This creative project centers on creating evaluative writing about film, in the form of a film review blog. Preliminary writing was done, in which the distinction was made between critical film writing and movie reviewing, as well as an analysis

This creative project centers on creating evaluative writing about film, in the form of a film review blog. Preliminary writing was done, in which the distinction was made between critical film writing and movie reviewing, as well as an analysis of how film critics have honed in their criticism and what makes their content effective for their audience. The rest of the writing for this project consists of a total of 15 reviews for 15 different movies released in 2017 and 2018. In these reviews, there is a brief introduction of the plot and context in which the film is made, followed by an evaluative analysis of what made the film effective or ineffective in achieving its artistic goals. The reviews involve an amalgamation of the content and topics taught in the Film and Media Studies program at Arizona State University, from screenwriting to cinematography. This process of writing reviews and being edited by the Director and Second Reader allows for the opportunity to find a unique writing voice and create content that is accessible for the wide audience that would be reading the work. All of the writing completed for this project (except for the "My Favorite Film Critics" piece) is compiled together in a WordPress blog, in an easily readable and accessible format. The blog itself serves as a way to reach the desired audience, as well as entice them to engage with the writing and the films being written about. This includes providing images and trailers for each respective film, to add a visual component to the writing. The final product is a unique way to engage with the content taught in the Film and Media Studies program, while simultaneously building a portfolio of writing that will be expanded upon and continued in the future.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2018-05

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Cyborg Feminism: Ambiguity and Hybridity of the Female Cyborg

Description

A posthuman figure like the female cyborg challenges traditional humanist feminism in ways that make room for theorizing new subjectivities and feminist epistemologies. Rather than support a traditional feminism that assumes common experiences within patriarchal society and erases differences among

A posthuman figure like the female cyborg challenges traditional humanist feminism in ways that make room for theorizing new subjectivities and feminist epistemologies. Rather than support a traditional feminism that assumes common experiences within patriarchal society and erases differences among women, cyborg feminism moves beyond naturalism and essentialism to acknowledge complex, individual, and ever-changing identity. Three films, Fritz Lang’s Metropolis (1927), Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner (1982), and Alex Garland’s Ex Machina (2015), all offer such a vision of the female cyborg. In these films, the cyborg subject is a composite of machine and human—sometimes physical, dependent on the corporal mixing of flesh and machine, but just as often mental. Human sentiment, human memories, and human emotion merge with mechanical frames and electronic codes/coding to produce cyborgs. Importantly, every main cyborg in these films is coded as female. For each cyborg, a female body hosts preprogrammed sexuality and the emotions each creator thinks a woman should have, whether those are empathy, compassion, or submissiveness.

The cyborgs in these films, however, refuse to let categorizations like female, or even their status as human, alive, or real, restrict them so easily. As human-robot hybrids, cyborgs bridge identities that are assumed to be separate and often oppositional or mutually exclusive. Cyborgs reveal the structures and expectations reified in gender to suggest that something constructed can as easily be deconstructed. In doing so, they create loose ends that leave space for new understandings of both gender and technology. By viewing these films alongside critical theory, we can understand their cyborgs as subversive, hybrid characters. Accordingly, the cyborg as a figure subverts and fragments the coherency of narratives that present gender, technology, and identity in monolithic terms, not only helping us envision new possibilities but giving us the faculties to imagine them at all.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2019-05

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Victor and Vanquished: An Examination of Divergent Post-WWII Film Movements in Germany, Italy, and the United States

Description

History and art have always had an intersecting relationship, and each helps us to acquire a better understanding of the other, since artistic works help us to visualize the zeitgeist of a particular point in history. The connection between art

History and art have always had an intersecting relationship, and each helps us to acquire a better understanding of the other, since artistic works help us to visualize the zeitgeist of a particular point in history. The connection between art and history is most apparent when the radical changes that befall society through historically important events, especially conflict, are followed by sweeping changes in society, which trickle their way down into the minds of artists and creators, whose works subsequently reflect these changes. We cannot understand these works and their relationship to their respective period of time simply by isolating them into individual components like art style, artist, and location. They are socially and historically charged, part of a larger network of intersecting relationships that factor in concepts like ideology, material, and culture. We can examine the analytical power of this framework, better known as actor network theory, in a post-WWII European landscape, a period heightened by rapid social changes as the citizens of the formerly war-torn continent worked to rebuild and recover. When examining the artistic output of vanquished nations, mainly Italian neorealist films and German Trümmerfilmen, in a framework built around the principles established in actor network theory, we can see how the historical, political, social, and cultural developments established in the wake of European fascism’s unceremonious collapse is reflected on film when compared to the victorious United States, whose infrastructure and film industry remained mostly unscathed.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2020-05

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Commodifying Asian Aesthetics and Eliminating Asian Bodies: Misrepresentations of Asianness in Science Fiction Film and Television

Description

This work examines three common practices—yellowface in Cloud Atlas (2012), whitewashing in Star Trek Into Darkness (2013), and absence in Firefly (2002)—employed in popular science fiction that represent Asianness and disregard the Asian body. Though the creators purport to have

This work examines three common practices—yellowface in Cloud Atlas (2012), whitewashing in Star Trek Into Darkness (2013), and absence in Firefly (2002)—employed in popular science fiction that represent Asianness and disregard the Asian body. Though the creators purport to have progressive ideals at the center of their production choices, their works call on Techno-Orientalist and Orientalist tropes and divorce them from the Asian body, implicitly continuing the Orientalist argument of Western supremacy even in representing Asianness.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2017-05

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Holding Out for a Hero: The Evolution of the Superhero Genre in Post-9/11 America

Description

This thesis aims to analyze and explain the resurgence of the superhero genre, particularly in recent cinema, directly following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. It will also deconstruct the current American political landscape and define how popular culture

This thesis aims to analyze and explain the resurgence of the superhero genre, particularly in recent cinema, directly following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. It will also deconstruct the current American political landscape and define how popular culture has historically reflected real-world issues. The study draws heavily on the political ideology of neoliberalism and Henry Jenkins' media theory of convergence culture. I ultimately argue in the course of the analysis that viewers of these superhero films, regardless of their interest in comic books, cathartically release their fears and post-9/11 anxiety through cinematic escapism. It will also relay the evolution of the superhero in the last seventy years as a way to show the effects current events have on popular culture and history, using Captain America and Iron Man as examples of shifting American values.

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Created

Date Created
2014-05

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Film Reviews: A Complete Look at the 2015 Oscar Nominated Films

Description

My name is Adriana Becerra and I am a student at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University. In hoping to combine my two passions of journalism and film, for my Honors Undergraduate Thesis

My name is Adriana Becerra and I am a student at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University. In hoping to combine my two passions of journalism and film, for my Honors Undergraduate Thesis project I created my own film review website. My website is a complete review of the films that were nominated for the 2015 Oscars in the following categories: Best Picture, Animated Feature, Documentary Feature, Foreign Language, and Short Film Live Action. In all, I watched and reviewed a total of twenty-eight films based on acting, lighting, music, cinematography, costume/makeup/set design, writing, and visual effects. Over the course of nine months, I have watched, reviewed, and talked extensively about each film that I have reviewed. Though tedious at times, I thoroughly enjoyed completing my Undergraduate Thesis Project. I hope to continue critically looking at films, and possibly even incorporating film in my journalistic career.

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Created

Date Created
2016-05

Iris

Description

An artistic film about a girl piecing together memories in search of meaning and hope.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2015-12

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Vulnerability and Improvisation: Creating YouTube Content

Description

Vulnerability research is a fairly new field of study and has yet to be applied to fields such as improvisation or online content creation. Making vulnerability public in a way that necessitates improvisation is fundamental to YouTube content creation. This

Vulnerability research is a fairly new field of study and has yet to be applied to fields such as improvisation or online content creation. Making vulnerability public in a way that necessitates improvisation is fundamental to YouTube content creation. This Creative Project focuses on drawing connections between Vulnerability and Improvisation as it relates to creating content for YouTube. I did this through creating my own content which consisted of four YouTube videos centering around the theme of embracing fear. I found that in order to create content, I had to practice vulnerability myself and embrace improvisation if I wished to communicate those same themes to my audience. This project revealed that there are many ways which this powerful vulnerability research is yet to be applied, specifically in the realm of vastly public arenas such as YouTube. This research shows that vulnerability is not only applicable to interpersonal relationships, but has the potential to influenced thousands when used in public spheres.

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Created

Date Created
2015-05

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Disney Animated Film and its Negative Impact on Children

Description

The Walt Disney Company has been a worldwide phenomenon for over half a century. Disney's animated films in particular impact a large number of individuals around the world. The fact that they rerelease popular films every few years lends to

The Walt Disney Company has been a worldwide phenomenon for over half a century. Disney's animated films in particular impact a large number of individuals around the world. The fact that they rerelease popular films every few years lends to the lasting influence these movies will hold in the lives of children to come. It is important to examine the messages Disney animated films can teach children in regards to women's roles, United States history, and racial difference. This essay examines these topics as they appear in Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, The Little Mermaid, Pocahontas, and The Lion King. Lastly, it examines the potential impact these films can leave on children and suggests ways in which adults can help children analyze what they see in the media.

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Created

Date Created
2014-12

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The Depiction of Schizophrenia in Film

Description

The depiction of mental illness, schizophrenia in particular, within film is a unique phenomenon that film directors have decided to undertake more so in the last 20 years than ever before in cinematic history (Wedding & Niemic, 2014; Robinson, 2004;

The depiction of mental illness, schizophrenia in particular, within film is a unique phenomenon that film directors have decided to undertake more so in the last 20 years than ever before in cinematic history (Wedding & Niemic, 2014; Robinson, 2004; Gabbard & Gabbard, 1999; Wahl, 1997). Countless filmmakers have taken on the challenge of depicting this complex, yet degenerative condition that entails auditory and visual hallucinations, disorganized thought and speech, and delusions. Its portrayals are usually exaggerated and romanticized, and convey a sense of separate "Otherness" with those who have a mental disorder. And while filmmakers try to encapsulate the schizophrenic experience, it is not without psychiatric error and regarding the person who has schizophrenia as a spectacle. This unfair and ostracizing view of people who have schizophrenia is fueled by films like A Beautiful Mind and The Shining where the film either creates impossibly high standards for schizophrenics to perform at, or the film paints the character as a violent savage. In either case, the end result is the marking and, usually, denouncement of the schizophrenic for their illness. What filmmakers tend to overlook is how much the public learns from the cinematic portrayals of these disorders, and that their films are contributing to an overarching issue of public presumptions of actual schizophrenia and how it is perceived. While the Hollywood approach offers a depiction that is usually more tangible and enjoyable for masses of audiences, spectators should recognize that these are artistic interpretations that take liberties in their depictions of schizophrenia. Viewing these films with an objective mindset to better understand the inner workings of schizophrenia is absolutely crucial in arriving anything close to the truth behind this mental illness that has been demonized long enough.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2015-05