Closely Watched Films: An Introduction to the Art of Narrative Film Technique

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University of California Press, Aug 2, 2004 - Performing Arts - 297 pages
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How do films work? How do they tell a story? How do they move us and make us think? Through detailed examinations of passages from classic films, Marilyn Fabe supplies the analytic tools and background in film history and theory to enable us to see more in every film we watch. Ranging from D. W. Griffith's The Birth of a Nation to Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing, and ending with an epilogue on digital media, Closely Watched Films focuses on exemplary works of fourteen film directors whose careers together span the history of the narrative film. Lively and down-to-earth, this concise introduction provides a broad, complete, and yet specific picture of visual narrative techniques that will increase readers' excitement about and knowledge of the possibilities of the film medium.

Shot-by-shot analyses of short passages from each film ground theory in concrete examples. Fabe includes original and well-informed discussions of Soviet montage, realism and expressionism in film form, classical and modern sound theory, the classic Hollywood film, Italian neorealism, the French New Wave, auteur theory, modernism and postmodernism in film, political cinema, feminist film theory and practice, and narrative experiments in new digital media. Encompassing the earliest silent films as well as those that exploit the most recent technological innovations, this book gives us the particulars of how film—arguably the most influential of contemporary forms of representation—constitutes our pleasure, influences our thoughts, and informs our daily reality.

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Closely watched films: an introduction to the art of narrative film technique

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Why exactly was Citizen Kane such a revolutionary film? What are the hallmarks of Italian Neorealism? How do directors sew together a smooth scene from five or six different shots? Fabe answers these ... Read full review


DW Griffiths The Birth of a Nation
Sergei Eisensteins The Battleship Potemkin
FW Murnaus The Last Laugh and Charles Chaplins The Adventurer
Howard Hawkss His Girl Friday
Orson Welless Citizen Kane
Vittorio De Sicas The Bicycle Thief
François Truffauts The 400 Blows
Alfred Hitchcocks Notorious
Woody Allens Annie Hall
Spike Lees Do the Right Thing
Patricia Rozemas Ive Heard the Mermaids Singing
Digital Video and New Forms of Narrative in Mike Figgiss Timecode

Federico Fellinis 8 12

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About the author (2004)

Marilyn Fabe is Lecturer in Film Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.

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