all posts from October 2008


Adaptation Act 3 Sarcastic?

I’m not convinced. On the level of comprehension, act three is exactly what Donald and McKee stand for. While a swamp ape would have been the deuxs ex machina abhorred by the character and real McKee, the alligator is not so bad. They are in a swamp, and the alligators have been seen there before. I see […]

Many-Leveled Narratives in all their gloriousness

Like many in our class, my first academic exposure to Adaptation was in Don’s screenwriting class. We examined the unconventional structure, and how it still broke into McKee’s blessed three acts complete with arcs and climaxes. Each act, sequence and scene had its turn, and we went through the process of figuring out exactly how it was […]

Wherefore Art Thou, oh Narrator?

Chatman argues persuasively (at least, once it got translated into human-speak in class–hats off to Professor Mittell for that one) that the viewer constructs a cinematic narrator and implied author while watching a film text. At the time, it made sense. Anyone “reading” a film will create a prime mover behind every choice in the […]

Science, The Prestige and Intertextual References

As part-time physicist (who would have thunk it … a second post combining my disciplines) I feel I must set the record straight. I know nobody wants to hear it, but poor Tesla was not a wizard. He was just a physicist who basically invented radio, failed the electricity race and had a unit of magnetic […]

Hydrating with Martinis

Aaron persuasively argues in his blog that Barton Fink uses the impersonal subjective, as explained by George Wilson in “Transparency and Twist in the Narrative Fiction Film,” primarily in the hotel scenes to visually show us Barton’s subjective view of the world. The film’s taglines, “There’s only one thing stranger than what’s going on inside his […]

Barton Fink and Weimar Cinema

First things first. I must comment on the oh-so Jewish hair exemplified in tonight’s screening. And now that that’s out of my system … Taking a survey of film history course has afforded me a sort of Langlois approach to cinema in comparing my screenings. While my 102 film exposure has been largely (if not […]

Another Final Paper Topic

This one really isn’t really for me, because I’m pretty excited (or, as excited as one can be about writing 15 pages …) about my first idea. But I was watching some television, as one does on break, and realized that beyond the narrative of a television episode itself, credit sequences are endowed with a […]

Seriality in Narrative

We’ve talked a lot about how the viewer is considered active in Bordwell’s model. They use schemata to evaluate the information provided by syuzhet and style to construct fabula. The viewer makes assumption, inferences and hyptheses, which are then proved or disproved when the narrative provides more depth, range and communicativeness. And now that I’ve […]

Constructing Narrative in Political Campaigns

Right now, like many, I have politics on the brain. A lot. And what better way to vent my obsession than to examine the deliberate construction of personas (characters) for our favorite political figures of the day in my blog? I’m going to try to leave my beliefs out of it as much as possible […]

Final Paper Topic Thoughts

Once upon a time … I say this only because there is a bit of a story behind my current paper topic thought. The day before I was due to come back to Middlebury, I went out and finally made the switch. I got a mac. Bad timing … I got to spend the whole […]

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