This book is designed to provide a basic introduction to the academic discipline known as film studies. It covers, in the first eleven chapters, the fundamental elements of formal film analysis, from the expressive content of individual images to the ways in which images link with one another; from the structures of narrative screenplays to the basics of cinematography, special effects, and sound. The final chapter is a step-by-step guide to writing a final paper for the kind of course for which this textbook has been written.
is a primer, a pared-down introduction to the field. It is aimed at beginners. Its goal is not to ask and answer every question, cover every issue and term, and point out the exceptions that accompany every rule. Instead, Film Studies tries to cover the subject of narrative cinema accurately but broadly, precisely but not comprehensively. It is a relatively short book, not a doorstop or makeshift dumbbell.
tries to be as practical and useful as possible. It aims for the widest possible readership and is pitched accordingly. It draws most of its examples from American films because they are the films that most American students have seen in the past and are likely to see in the future. It is designed to accompany a wide spectrum of film courses but is focused most clearly on the type of mainstream Intro to Film class that is taught in practically every college and university in the United States and Canada.