Sunday, 13 December 2009

Advice for writing your essay's argument for the Institutions and Audience section of the Exam

Whatever you do you should always read the question and underline or circle its key words. Then make your plan for your answer. Remember to use key words from the question to keep your essay's argument relevant. You also need to use key concepts such as Audience, Production, Distribution, Exhibition and Exchange. Remember to use and apply concepts such as Technological Convergence, Synergies, Media Convergence (for media ownership) etc. There are several other terms listed in a previous post on selected key terms for Institutions and Audiences.

Rather than just plough through the expected format of production, distribution/marketing/exhibition issues with key terms tagged on, why not begin with the audience's reception of the film. Its the most important part of the process and what happens there can decide the genres and casting, etc. of future films which institutions may then "greenlight". Given how much of the audience first finds out about a film on the Internet and then discusses it on various websites, is a good way to discuss technological convergence early on. After all, YouTube, Face-Book, Blogsites, Amazon UK message boards on  films, etc have put people onto films that they would otherwise never have found.

Moreover, like a detective you can go over the ISSUES as to why a particular film was a success or not for its institution(s) by beginning with the audience's reactions to the film (both critics and ordinary people) and then by raking over  the production, marketing and exhibition issues associated with the film and its institution.  You will be better placed to decide why a film succeeded or failed to make money and please its audiences. After all, in the regular pattern of film-making and the decisions taken at each stage, errors can take place which could be rectified in future.

Another possible angle is to begin with the importance of technological convergence and begin with its ever widening role in enjoying, making and marketing films.

As mentioned at the beginning you need to address the question's key words and not just spill down everything you know about your case study. Relevance is everything.

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