Independent Study Criteria

Independent Study

Procedure, Film Theory, Film History, Assessment Criteria

The Independent Study is worth 25% of your IB Film grade.  You must research, design and produce a Short Documentary Script on an aspect of Film Theory and/or Film History.

The topic chosen should NOT be familiar to you but rather something carefully chosen that your interested and curious in learning more about, aim to challenge and stretch yourself.

The audience is High School Film student. The Narrator is you as an onscreen host or voice over. If you need to include an interview with a director quotes must be verifiable & cited.

I. Procedure

Rationale, Script and Sources for SHORT DOCMENTARY FILM of 12–15 Pages on an aspect of FILM THEORY and/or FILM HISTORY, based on study of a minimum of FOUR FILMS from more than ONE COUNTRY.

All presented in written dossier composed of the following three items:

A. Rationale – a brief, reasoned explanation of the concerns of the topic, no more than 100 words.

B. Script – must clearly indicate the relationship between the audio and visual elements of the documentary, employing an established documentary format such as “side-by-side” columns for video and audio components. All descriptions of video and audio elements must be both detailed and specific. Scripts must be 12-15 Pages at HL and must use 12-point Courier font (not in block capitals) and single spacing. It is CRITICAL that the student treats a topic of FILM HISTORY OR FILM THEORY in CINEMATIC rather than literary terms.

C. Annotated List Of Sources refer to all materials used in researching the topic AND materials used in the documentary itself, including films from which extracts will be shown and quotations from experts or academics. Annotations should have a DYNAMIC RANGE and give source of reference (Books, Journals, DVD’s, Reviews, Articles, Etc). A comment on relevance of each of the sources must be included.

Questions to Consider:
Aspects of film theory and history to compare/contrast amongst films?
Who made this film? Why? When? What was socio-economic environment?
What can we tell about the filmmaker? Time Made? Places Shot?
For whom was the film made? How does it address the audience?
What is the nature of our engagement with the film?
What outside influences – finance, ownership, institutional sociocultural context?
What tradition is it in (ie. American Gangster, Bollywood, Film Noir)?
To what other works might it be connected? Books, Plays, Art?

II. Film Theory & History in Cinematic Terms

Independent Study is based on Film Theory and Film History but also draws to some extent on Textual Analysis. The aim of the independent study is to encourage students to engage in some depth with a cinematic tradition that is unfamiliar to their own culture.

Students must produce a script for a complete short documentary production exploring an aspect of film theory or film history, based on the study of films from more than one country. The documentary should be targeted at an audience of film students in the 14 to 18 years age range.

The topic should be discussed primarily in cinematic terms. The prime voice of the documentary must clearly be that of the student, who will also act as the narrator, onscreen host and/or voice-over. Students must ensure that any comments or ideas they attribute to celebrities or others, such as experts, are fully supported by detailed references in the annotated list of sources.

III. Assessment Criteria

There is an excellent understanding of the film history/film theory topic. Engagement with the target audience, scope and depth of argument, the use of sources and the structure of the script are excellent.

Visual and audio elements are detailed, clearly and coherently described and are aptly and coherently described, and are aptly and proficiently linked.

Films referred to are highly relevant to the topic and are coherently and fully integrated into the script.

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