Back to All Events

Analyze Burton's Use of One Cinematic Category

Consider the cinematic techniques that you have found evidence for in the Burton films we have seen so far. What patterns have you noticed in his use of cinematic techniques? Does he use framing, angles, camera movement, lighting, sound, or editing in consistent ways? Does he continually create the same kinds of effects? Your assignment is to choose one of these six categories and write a paper analyzing how Burton uses the techniques of that category to create a particular effect. To be clear, you are not writing about all the different ways he uses those cinematic techniques; instead, you are writing about how he consistently uses them to create a particular effect. You must:

  • Clearly identify the following in the introductory paragraph:
    • The director (Tim Burton)
    • The films being referenced (try to use at least three - “Victor” counts!)
    • The category of techniques to be analyzed
    • The particular, specific effect he creates
  • Focus on interpretive, not literal effects. This means “characters that look large,” “a juxtaposition of conflict,” or “strange-looking settings” are not the goals of analysis; instead, we want to know how these literal effects develop interpretive ones: the audience can empathize with weakness, a particular tone is developed, an event is foreshadowed, the differences between characters is made more stark (or an indefinite number of other effects!).
  • Use specific examples of cinematic techniques from Burton films and pair them with close analysis.

Goals are to demonstrate the ability to identify cinematic techniques and their effects while composing a well-organized piece of writing (introduces its topic, uses evidence, includes original analysis, closes with a conclusion, and is organized so that each paragraph develops a particular idea).
Exemplary Work is written with clear attention to grammatical accuracy and shows a command of academic writing. It includes well-selected details from the text, clearly describes these details to demonstrate understanding of each technique, and includes insightful analysis of cinematic techniques and their effects.

Earlier Event: February 12
Comparing Edward Scissorhand's Neighborhood
Later Event: February 19
Reading Log