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Spike Lee as an Auteur: Screen Text Analysis

KPB113 Assessment 2 – Essay 2

This document provides students with information about the requirements for assessment. Detailed instructions and resources are included to help you to complete and submit the task. The Criterion Reference Assessment (CRA) Rubric that markers use to grade the assessment task is included and should be used as a guide when working on the assessment task.

Task description

From the list below, choose a single filmmaker and a few (1-3) key scenes from their oeuvre. Analyse your chosen filmmaker and their key scenes through ONE of the following analytical frames.

  Star studies

  Cult film 

 Auteur analysis This is an authentic assessment piece because you are being asked to apply critical thinking and text analysis skills developed in this unit to a contemporary screen text of your choice.

Learning outcomes measured

Demonstrate a broad knowledge of film and television text forms, the industries that produce these texts and the audiences that consume them. 

 Apply textual analysis techniques to evaluate and theorise about the ways in which film and television texts communicate and construct meaning. 

 Use written language to effectively communicate interpretations of film and TV texts to an audience.

What you need to do

From the list below, choose a single filmmaker and a few (1-3) key scenes from their oeuvre:  Sofia Coppola  Paul Thomas Anderson  Jane Campion  Wes Anderson  David Lynch  Kathryn Bigelow  Spike Lee

Analyse your chosen filmmaker and their key scenes through only one of the following analytical frames:  Star Studies  Cult Film  Auteur Analysis

Once you have chosen your framing, use the following key question to guide your analysis:  Star Studies: How and why might the theory and categories of Star Studies apply to your chosen filmmaker and/or the actors they work with?  Cult Film: To what degree could your chosen filmmaker be regarded as a cult filmmaker? What qualities of cult film culture apply to them and their work?  Auteur Analysis: What is the argument either for or against your chosen filmmaker being regarded as an auteur?

The key questions above will be informed by the sociocultural and production context of the chosen screen text/s as well as analysis of elements such as:  Visual style and mise-en-scène  Cinematography, sound and film making technique  Motifs/symbolism  Textual codes and/or conventions You do not need to address every textual element above. Select the ones which are most relevant to your framing and analysis.

Answer

Director Chosen: Spike Lee as an Auteur 

Introduction

Spike Lee is a very popular American film director, producer, writer and actor. The ability and experience with multiple facets in film making makes Spike Lee more of an auteur.  His production companies have thirty five films since 1983. His film Mo’ Better Blues was criticized for anti-Semitism where he depicted the problems faced by black artists. Spike Lee’s films were greatly influenced by his thoughts and experiences (Min, Eungjun; Joo, Jinsook; Kwak, Han Ju, 2003) . He was actively involved in the deciding of the visuals, lighting and creative aspects of the scenes. Spike Lee is one of the boldest and brashest auteur in Hollywood in present times and has singlehandedly changed the way in which Afro American’s were treated in Hollywood. His breakthrough feature She’s Gotta Have It introduced a striking new voice to cinema. His style of work and choice of concepts bring in a lot of reflection of his personal thoughts and ideas into films, thus making auteur more of his style of cinema making. The analysis of scenes for various movies of Spike Lee further intensifies the relation between his personal thoughts and the movies he makes. His movies are greatly focused on the problems of the black Americans and how characters suffer or have to work doubly hard in order to reach the top positions in their business. This brings out a very strong relation with his personal style and life. Moreover, he has been accused by media several times for being insensitive and writing stories which are far from reality (Ashby, Arved, ed¸2003).

Scene analysis

Scene 1 from Mo’ Better Blues: Scene from this movie depict a lot of visual techniques used differently which make the movie outstanding. The narrative of this movie is very subtle and more adapted from the television genre. An account is a chain of occasions in cause-impact relationship happening in time and space. It is a story being told with a chain of occasions and a succession clarifying an example of circumstances and end results. It ends up fundamental to utilize a proper account style to pass on a story in a compelling way. The account is basically impelled by activities of the characters. 

Spike Lee has a unique style of lighting used throughout the film making the whole film very unique. It helps bring out the characters and the story in a beautiful manner. It indicates a strong role of the director in the expression of the story and bringing out the plot with an effective lighting and creative presentation. Though the story has a lot to do with the blacks and their struggles, it also presents a lot about how the world is changing and how people are working towards an equal society (Lyman, Eric J., 2008).

The portrayal style utilized as a part of a film assumes a basic part as it enables the groups of onlookers to comprehend the occasions that are a piece of the motion picture and the message or story. The portrayal style is to a great degree critical as it speaks with the crowds. The traditional Hollywood style, its focal configuration, and account depends on the popular culture where in fabulousness and story are basic (Min, Eungjun; Joo, Jinsook; Kwak, Han Ju¸2003). The mainstream culture revolves around picture issues with brain science and its use. The pop culture believes that brain science isn't something that they require   as they are independent and imagine that they are sufficiently solid to deal with things without anyone else's input (Ashby, Arved, ed¸2003).

Scene 2 from She’s Gotta Have It: Scenes from this movie show a very strong characterization and narrative. The brain science isn't implied just for the powerless personalities to have the capacity to adapt to life, but at the same time is implied for individuals to have the capacity to deal with life in a better manner, by understanding themselves as well as other people in a superior way (Maule, Rosanna¸ 2008). The contemporary society, then again trusted brain science to be related with cognizance and social improvement. Spike Lee didn't consider it as a shortcoming change strategy, however as an apparatus to improve learning and Development. These ideas are utilized as a part of instance of Hollywood traditional style. The traditional Hollywood style depends on the way that brain science, mind diversions, the ability to think and a few such ideas are important to the bigger masses. It likewise centered around ideas like subjection and genuine encounters (Diver, Mike, 2014)

A few particular visual TV strategies are used in contemporary movies too and they are very like those utilized as a part of TV (Min, Eungjun; Joo, Jinsook; Kwak, Han Ju¸2003). It incorporates a picture source, a man or picture, sound source, PCs, cameras and a few such gadgets. In any case, if there should be an occurrence of movies a film stock is utilized as opposed to transmitting gadgets as it doesn't need to be transmitted to a TV, however played in silver screens and theaters. Along these lines, they are put away on a stock film. Movies and TVs have incredibly affected each other and this can be comprehended by the measure of similitudes that they share. Regardless of filling distinctive needs, despite everything they utilize similar advances and comparable methods to shoot and making the show or motion pictures. They have taken a considerable measure of procedures from each other keeping in mind the end goal to have achieved their present stage (Min, Eungjun; Joo, Jinsook; Kwak, Han Ju¸2003).

Analysis of overall style

Spike Lee has used a great deal of personal influence in his films and has also been an active part of multiple creative aspects of the movies that he made. This makes his movies more of a Auteur and less of a cult film. He has acted in ten of his self directed movies and written the screenplays of many of them. 

The style utilized is exact portrayal. It is the activities of the characters that drive the story, not the portrayal. Thus, insignificant portrayal is utilized to communicate with watchers. It ends up imperative that the attention be on building up a solid comprehension of what the watchers definitely know, what they can see and what they should be told. In view of these components, tension and excite have been made in the opening scenes and in addition the losing scenes of the motion picture. The characters in the motion picture are the ones who drive the portrayal. Their part and activities are exact and compelling (Ashby, Arved, ed¸2003)

The characters can drive the portrayal and no story overabundance is required. There are a great deal of complex components utilized as a part of the film as activity and an anecdote about feelings prompting wrongdoings It is an essential part of guaranteeing better portrayal. Worldly request and recurrence utilized as a part of the film is proper, as it has been set up based on the part of characters in the stories which is unobtrusive. It sets up a solid comprehension about the focal point of the motion picture and what it tries to describe. In addition, the adjustment in situations happens on a higher recurrence in this way giving the crowds a confounded comprehension about what the motion picture is endeavoring to pass on or what the story is revolves around (Maule, Rosanna¸2008). This helps assemble the anticipation and at last the connections between different occasions and circumstances is uncovered. Along these lines, the story can describe different components to gatherings of people in an engaging way. In the meantime, it is likewise ready to connect the majority of the occasions in a compelling path with successful portrayal (Min, Eungjun; Joo, Jinsook; Kwak, Han Ju, 2003)

Confidence is an idea which enables individuals to rest easy and expect positive outcomes in all circumstances and conditions. It encourages us stay cool and positive even in extreme circumstances and under strain. Over positive thinking, detracts from the idea of authenticity, and prompts false convictions. A harmony amongst good faith and authenticity is to a great degree basic so as to arrange the earth effectively. Similarly, Spike Lee uses a negative viewpoint excessively much. This does bring in a lot of reason for criticism for Spike Lee’s writing and directing (Diver, Mike, 2014)

It is essential that individuals test their own particular levels of positive thinking and manufacture the correct demeanor which is adjusted and near reasonable potential outcomes. It regards be idealistic yet not doubtful. The convictions and practices of every one of the way of life all inclusive are to a great degree enhanced. They have certain likenesses and a few contrasts and advance idealism and authenticity in distinction ways. This prompts a consistency in conviction of energy or cynicism to an expansive degree (Thompson, Kristin; Bordwell, David, 2010). Culture is formed through the cooperation of individuals and their thoughts and also philosophies. If there should be an occurrence of the western culture being converged with a few different societies brings about the development of present day societies and this structures the multiculturalism in the cutting edge world. This has engendered confidence to a substantial degree (Shuker, Roy, 2013).

Conclusion

To conclude, Spike Lee has been able to create fantastic movies and at the same time has been able to include his personal thoughts and personality in making these movies a success through adding more power and drama to it. It is quite evident that there has to be a strong understanding of film making and techniques as well as technicalities of creative direction (Kamina, Pascal¸2002).

Only then it would be possible to bring out a stronger element of narration and effectiveness in movie making. It helps establish a better sense of readability by using auteur as a movie expression method. It also helps movie makers bring out their message clearly and spread awareness among people about the realities of life and struggles of various segments in the society. Spike Lee has definitely changed how movies are made in Hollywood (Ashby, Arved, ed, 2003)

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