C.Neil Davenport | An Excavation of Themes in Film
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Jan 01 2017

An Excavation of Themes in Film


Neil Davenport

Hello, C. Neil Davenport here and I will be your blogger. What I am focusing on is the excavation of the themes in film. Here is a simple, but perplexing quote from the marvelous Steve Martin that I feel sums up what I am regarding as my excavation. The comedian says, “You know what your problem is, it’s that you haven’t seen enough movies. All of life’s riddles are answered in the movies.” Now if you can pick up on the joke, terrific. However if after you read this silly quote and subconsciously pick up on the notion that there is something more meaningful to what was said, you are in the right place.

What I believe is that each film has meaning whether the filmmaker establishes it or not. So here is what I will do. I will study both current and classic films to present the theme showcased within them and evaluate their true meaning.

While delving into the structure of the film in how it supports the theme, I will figure out what the film’s hidden message is and write about what it is trying to tell us. I believe it is worth looking into and without understanding the theme, there’s no point for a film to be seen.  
Themes can be simple moral lessons of life, a new perspective of an old idea, or a philosophical question we all need to find an answer to. All movies, in my educated opinion are built to do two things. Comedic or tragic, films are designed to entertain us in some fashion and by informing us all in some small way, films propagate a message which tells us, “We can be better than how we presently are.” Each silly and intelligent film has a theme and we all can learn from them.
What you can expect from this blog is the coverage of a film every Wednesday. Each one will have a researched voice on a specific thematic given the specific film and how they go about demonstrating it. Now sure at times I will be giving my personal opinion on what I think about the film, but that is not the extent of my resources. I will use academic sources on filmmaking, screenwriting and storytelling from Blake Synder’s Save the Cat series, Aristotle’s 6 Elements, and other credible materials. My goal is to be unbiased as possible in a bias world.
Theme is all around us. It is in the decisions we make, the people we meet and the situations we all find ourselves in. All you have to do is be in tune to the world around you and put the pieces together to see the simple lesson of life. So who knows, maybe Mr. Martin is right. We will see!

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