Narrative and Narration

Narrative and Narration

Analyzing Cinematic Storytelling

  • Author: Buckland, Warren
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • ISBN: 9780231543590
  • eISBN Pdf: 9780231543590
  • Place of publication:  New York , United States
  • Year of digital publication: 2020
  • Month: December
  • Language: English
From mainstream blockbusters to art house cinema, narrative and narration are the driving forces that organize a film. Yet attempts to explain these forces are often mired in notoriously complex terminology and dense theory. Warren Buckland provides a clear and accessible introduction that explains how narrative and narration work using straightforward language.

Narrative and Narration distills the basic components of cinematic storytelling into a set of core concepts: narrative structure, processes of narration, and narrative agents. The book opens with a discussion of the emergence of narrative and narration in early cinema and proceeds to illustrate key ideas through numerous case studies. Each chapter guides readers through different methods that they can use to analyze cinematic storytelling. Buckland also discusses how departures from traditional modes, such as feminist narratives, art cinema, and unreliable narrators, can complicate and corroborate the book’s understanding of narrative and narration. Examples include mainstream films, both classic and contemporary; art house films of every stripe; and two relatively new styles of cinematic storytelling: the puzzle film and those driven by a narrative logic derived from video games. Narrative and Narration is a concise introduction that provides readers with fundamental tools to understand cinematic storytelling.
  • Table of Contacts
  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • Part I. The Basics
  • 1 The Emergence of Narrative, Narration, and Narrative Agents in Early Cinema (The Gay Shoe Clerk)
  • 2 Narrative Structure in Classical and Contemporary Hollywood (Hitchcock and James Bond)
  • 3 Narration (Gone Girl, beDevil, and Jurassic Park)
  • 4 Enunciation and Reflexivity (The Grand Budapest Hoteland Marnie)
  • Part II. Types of Storytelling
  • 5 Feminism, Narrative, Authorship (Gone Girland Orlando)
  • 6 Art Cinema Narration (Alice in the Citiesand Inland Empire)
  • 7 Unreliable Narration and Puzzle Films (You Only Live Once, Stage Fright, and The Butterfly Effect)
  • 8 Videogame Logic (The Fifth Element, Inception, and Source Code)
  • Coda
  • Works Cited
  • Index


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