Film History Materials

Final Project Overview

Take a contemporary film, TV show, or video game and connect it to a historical issue, movement, genre, or film style. This project will require research and analysis. In the course of this project you will have several milestones:

Your final project will be a 5-7 minute video or slideshow essay, where you present an argument for connecting your chosen modern moving-image “text” and connect it back to its historical roots. You can focus on the aesthetics, industrial practice, or social ideals to connect your chosen modern text to its historical movement, genre, or film style. Your project will need to include “evidence” (academic sources), and “examples” (scenes/shots/stills) to support the connection you are making. All projects should include “credits” noting not only yourself as director, but all academic, filmic, and musical sources used in your film.

We will discuss the technological requirements for this 
project in class at-length and a variety of resources will be available on the LMS, through the Library, and Technology Services. (This assignment can be successfully completed using PowerPoint and USB mic available on loan from the library.)

Step 1: Proposal

Your project proposal should explain your chosen topic and how it relates to film history; provide examples of films that your paper may discuss (contemporary and historical). It should provide a thesis statement or research question. It should be at least a paragraph (4-5 complete sentences) and no more than a page long.

Student Proposals



Sample Feedback

“This is a start and I see where you are trying to go in your proposal. I think that it needs to be scaled down. Focus on either K-Dramas or variety shows, doing both would be too much work. Also, take another look at the expectations for the project. You are asked to show how a contemporary film relates to historical films. So, you should not be comparing Korean and American television.”

“Good working thesis. Your project is too big for 5-minutes however. Can you pick one or two decades (i.e. 1950s, 60s) and show how those decades influenced today’s Bollywood films (or even Hollywood films that reference them?)”

Step 2: Annotated Bibliography

For the annotated bibliography, you will need to:

  • locate 3-5 academic sources appropriate for your topic
  • appropriately cite them using MLA or APA style
  • provide annotations that:
    • briefly summarize the main points of the source; and
    • indicate how/why you would use it in project.

You may find that you do not use all of the sources you cite in your annotated bibliography in your final project. However, at least 2 of your selected sources here should also appear in the final draft.

Student Annotated Bibliographies



Step 3: Script Draft

Your script draft is a written blueprint for your final project. As such it should include your voice over script, written in a casual or informal tone. Do not overly worry about grammar; focus instead on clearly defining your argument or presenting your historical analysis in an impactful way. You may want to bold words you want to stress in essay, mark places for you to pause, or even reference places you would change imagery for impact.

Your script should be roughly 750 words (before performance notations). Make sure to include a bibliography of sources used in preparing your script.

Student Script Drafts



Sample Feedback

“You did a great job on your script. There was a lot of information and you were still able to tie everything back together.”
Organization/Argument: Great job! I look forward to seeing the final project. Have fun selecting images/clips for your final version.

Focus & Evidence: Great job! Make sure to include a detailed bibliography and image/clip citations in the end credits of your project.

Voice: You have a wonderfully distinctive voice to your writing. It is clear you have a handle on your topic, and your interest is relayed in your tone.

Step 4: Final Multimedia Project

Your final project submission should be a 5-7 minute video file (MP4) or PowerPoint Show file (PPSX). Make sure that it includes a title slide/sequence with your name, and a credit sequence with your bibliography, and image, film, music source citations.



Student Final Projects

Link to Bollywood Slideshow