Choose only one of the following two options:
Option 1: Argumentative Essay. Your task is to make an argumentative claim about a specific type or genre of film. Why do we watch horror films? Does our love for gangster flicks have some odd affect on what we view as criminal behavior? Why are we so in love with remakes—is this just a ploy to make easy money, or is fun to see older scripts remade with today’s actors and themes? Are certain types of movies made to make social criticism or satire, and are they effective? These questions are simply meant to help you get started. You can use one of these ideas as a beginning point for your essay, or you can come up with your own. Do not, however, use the wording provided above—articulate your own original point of view in your own words. Also remember the idea of the argumentative essay. It offers a debate that often answers one of the following questions: Is it good or bad? Is it right or wrong? Is it harmful or harmless? Should or shouldn’t something be done? Make sure that your essay’s thesis is argumentative in nature.
Option 2: Interpretive Essay. You can also choose, as the focus for this last essay, to interpret a movie (or small group of related movies by the same director) and write about the movie’s meaning, about your interpretation of its message or theme, and about the reasons why you feel it is a “good” movie. Discuss the script, the dialogue, the actors, the sets, the wardrobe, and/or the cinematography. You can also include how the director might have contributed to the movie. Begin by briefly discussing your understanding of the movie’s theme. Remember that the focus of your topic sentences should explain how and why these various components of the film contribute to its success. Development should also incorporate specific examples from the films, as well as research from outside sources, to fully support your ideas.
For either option, do not write about movies as a whole, but narrow down your focus. Trying to write a 4-6 page essay about the entire spectrum of film would be too difficult, so narrow the focus of your claim by choosing a certain type of movie genre.
Using outside sources via LBCC’s online databases, the class texts, or current respected periodicals is required—remember that this is a research-driven essay. Make sure to use specific references and examples from the films themselves. Incorporate your own analysis of outside information and your own personal insight to fully develop your ideas. Organize your information effectively so as to prompt easy, concise reading. While the topic at hand and the presentation of your argument are primary (unity, development, and coherence), do not ignore the mechanics of your writing (grammar and punctuation).
Assume that you are writing for a psychologist who is doing a survey on film issues. She is familiar with movies, but don’t assume that you mustn’t explain yourself. Clearly articulate your point of view regarding what these writers have discussed and more importantly what you have learned and how you feel about the issue at hand.
4-6 pages, typed, double spaced, 12 point font and one inch margins all around. Use black ink. Do not quad space between paragraphs or try to extend the length of your essay with other such trickery. Include name, date, course number and time in the upper left hand corner of the first page. Put last name and page number in upper right hand margin (1/2 inch down) on successive pages. Create an effective, interesting title. Do not include a cover page.