Based on Vid.me’s “Cannibals,” students will create 60-second documentaries. The short film will accompany a class presentation on the status of the documentary in the twenty-first century. Some technical know-how will be required as well as video-editing software like iMovie, Windows Movie Maker, or smartphone apps.
This assignment consists of three parts:
The Thesis (5%)
DUE: VIA EMAIL Wed., Oct. 21, by beginning of class. No attachments, please; just copy/paste directly into the email, with correct punctuation and grammar.
SAMPLE THESIS: In this project, I will consider some of Kirby Dick's most recent documentaries (2005-present) and argue that their feminist themes--the treatment of sex/sexuality in Hollywood films, rape within the military, sexual assault on college campuses--make Dick one of the twenty-first century's most powerful visual advocates for women's rights.
The Project (20%)
DUE: beginning of class Wed., Nov. 11. The multimedia project created for our course should:
not exceed 60 seconds in length
include a catchy title that draws the reader into the project and reflects the writer’s overall argument
contain a thesis that is a) arguable, meaning one could agree and disagree with it); b) able to be supported with evidence; and c) clearly stated. This can be written into the description below the video.
include some form of narration to guide the viewer through the essay (e.g., voiceovers, intertitles, subtitles)
integrate multiple clips, images, etc. to support the thesis
feature a theme, fonts, music, etc. that fit the overall scope of the project
always keep in mind simplicity and accessibility, e.g., readers should not have to scroll indefinitely to find things; text should be easy to read (please avoid white text on black backgrounds)
close with a conclusion that not only restates the thesis, but also makes the reader think further about the subject matter or twenty-first century documentary studies in general
NOTE: If you choose to use videos from the Internet for your project, make sure they are decent copies; you might filter for HD. As well, most web browsers have add-ons or plug-ins for downloading YouTube videos onto your computer. Vimeo usually has a download option.
On Wednesday, Nov. 11, students will present to the class their 60-second docs. They will also answer any questions their classmates might have about their projects. No worries; this will be a very informal presentation. These are the only rules:
Students will present in the order of our sign-up sheet.
Each presentation should last no more than 10 minutes including the screening of your 60-second doc.
Each student is required to pose at least one question to the group that presents before it. The rest of the class may of course chime in afterward.