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History of Film: Methods of Story Telling

COMM 101 Communications Media in American Society

Chris Juengel

on 16 January 2015

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Transcript of History of Film: Methods of Story Telling

Stories or narratives have been shared in every culture as a means of entertainment, education, cultural preservation and in order to instill moral values.
While the elements of story-telling has largely gone unchanged, the methods of telling those stories have constantly evolved.
Film allows artists and story-tellers to present their messages in a new format, with a focus on visuals and audio.
History of Film: Methods of Story Telling
COMM 101
Communications Media in
American Society

Telling a Story
Telling a Story
While film does offer story-tellers new and unique ways of sharing a story, the basic principles of story telling are still followed.
All stories fall into one of the four basic themes:
Man vs. Man
Man vs Nature
Man vs Himself
Telling a Story
Telling a Story
What are the Elements of a Good Story?
Now we have the major pieces that make up a good story
Story, Characters, Conflict, etc

Now the question is how do we take all these seperate elements and weave them together to tell a story?
Jospeh Campbells' The Hero's Journey
Pacing refers to rate at which your story unfolds.
As well as how you control the moments of engagement and time.
And the tone at which you set your story to.
Story Structure
Is the structural framework that underlies the order and manner in which a narrative is presented to a reader, listener, or viewer.

Almost all good stories follow a three structure set up:
setup: introduction to the world & characters

conflict: an obstacle, goal, challenge or change that needs to be dealt with.

resolution: by the end the conflict has been met, and a conclussion presented.
Telling a Story
The Tech of Telling a Story
As Hollywood and technology have progressed, so has the ability to design, create and share a story.
Film Formats
Camera & Shoot Techniques
Scale and Budgets
Practical Effects
Digital Effects
Sound Recording
Practical Effects
Practical effect is any effect produced on-set, without CGI.
And can include any number of different shooting techniques, props, stunts, etc to create the desired effect
Throughout film history, hollywood has developed an impressive collection of methods to bring a story to life.
Make-up, Prosthetics & Animatronics
Sets, Models, Props, Costumes & Stunts
Ray Harryhausen
Jason and the Argonauts, Clash of the Titans, The 7th Voyage of Sinbad,
Practical Effects Forerunners
Stan Winston
Predator, Terminator, Jurassic Park, Aliens, The Thing, Friday the 13th
Rich Baker
An American Werewolf in London, Star Wars, Tropic Hunger, Men in Black, Planet of the Apes
Jim Henson
The Muppets, Seasme Street, Labyrinth, Fraggle Rock, TMNT
Is imagery that is created and/or manipulated outside the context of a live action shoot.
Added later through additional editing or computer effects.
Utilizes a variety of software, programming and digital production.

Digital Effects
CGI: Computer Generated Effects
Chroma key
Green/Blue Screen Effect
Replaces the background with images, characters or additional scenes
Motion Capture
Live motion combined with computer animation.
Face or Full Body Capture.
Computer Animation combined with A.I.
Simulates crowds, armies, etc.
Digital Effects Forerunners
George Lucas
Star Wars, Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, Prequels, Indiana Jones Series
Steven Spielberg
Indiana Jones Series, Jaws, Close Encounters, Saving Private Ryan, Jurrasic Park
James Cameron
Terminator 1-2, Aliens, True Lies,Titanic, Avatar
Digital or Practical, Which is better ?
So now we have a movie, so how do we market it to the public?
Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon

The Lion King 3D


Twilight: Breaking Dawn
Genre Films
Method of identifying films by their basic narratives.
Large variety of genres and sub-genres available.
Usually categorized according to their setting, theme topic, mood, or format
Fantasy/Science Fiction
Cross-genre Films:
Films that fall into more than one category.
High budget productions
Big names, locations and effects.
Designed to sell tickets and draw in large audiences.
Merchandizing & marketing
What was the first Blockbuster ?
Jaws were considered the first true blockbuster in the modern day terms.
Changed the way films would be marketed and endorsement.
Blockbusters, are treated with a mixed reputation.
The quality of realism in scene.
Also, known as suspension of disbelief.
The placement of characters and the arrangement of a scene.
Props, costumes, sets, characters, sounds etc.
Man vs Society
Sound's Impact
Music and audio can play just as much a role in creating a story as visuals.
Establishes a theme, mood, senseations, etc.
Jaws, Batman, Superman
Pirates of the Carribean, Rocky, Star Wars, Exorcist, The Good The Bad and the Ugly
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