Section 5: Film Reviews


Please post a short film review of approximately 250 – 500 words in length. You are welcome to upload or make use of the framework provided in Rupert’s class. 

The short film ‘Paperman’ is a romantic animation about a young man who bumps into the girl of his dreams on his way to work. Due to the tight schedules of busy workers in the inner-city, the connection the man felt with her did not last long as she had to board a train quite soon. After she leaves, the man is left with a pile of papers and one in particular which has her lipstick on it. The rest of the film explores how the man uses paper airplanes to catch her attention between two building and how the paper airplanes eventually (literally!) brings them together .

While it is a relatively modern animation, the film is completely shown in black and white apart from the girl’s red lipstick. In addition to this, the characters look stereotypical and exactly like drawings. These additions to the story create a nostalgic mood that is quite unique to this film.

It is not just the visual elements that resemble a mid 20th century animation; it’s the music as well. Using instruments such as saxophones and pianos create a jazzy feel and add to the overall nostalgic mood of the film. Music is also used in this film to mirror the emotions and actions of the characters. For example, when the man’s antagonistic-like boss approaches a shot, low and loud saxophone tunes are played to introduce the character to the audience. 

In conclusion, ‘Paperman’ is a very convincing short film that is successful in conveying every emotion the characters are feeling in a short amount of time. Even though similar stories have been brought to life before, Paperman creates its own uniqueness using the colours and music.


Please post a review of a feature film production of your choice (British or World cinema). Make sure to comment on the narrative structure, as well as sound, camera, lighting and editing choices.

‘Argo’ is a 2012 historical drama film directed by and starring Ben Affleck. The rest of the cast include Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin and John Goodman amongst others. The film is a visual representation of the Iran Hostage crisis in 1979 when CIA officer Tony Mendez led the rescue of six U.S. diplomats from Tehran, Iran, under the alias of a Canadian science-fiction film crew.

The film begins through a voice-over narration in which the narrator tells us a short history of the Shahs in Iran. It then introduces the streets of Iran that are covered by the public as they protest and march towards the American embassy. While this introduces the audience to the narrative, it also carries across the tense sense of chaos and how much the Iranians hate the Americans, which is a major key to the rest of the story.

The stage then switches over to American soil where we are introduced to the main character Tony Mendez, played by Ben Affleck. After he is informed of the hostage situation over in Western Asia, he is sparked with the idea of posing to be a Canadian film crew who are location hunting in Iran. We switch over between the hostages in Iran and Mendez in America as he takes his plan into motion for a while until Mendez leaves for Iran himself. Before he leaves we see Mendez mailing a birthday card for his son; this creates an emotional bond between the audience and the character because we know that there would be consequences if anything was to happen to Mendez while he is abroad in war-torn Iran. This gives us further reason to support the title character and so gets the audience further involved in the story.

After Mendez arrives in Iran, we see Affleck’s character switch from being a smart, well-dressed man to a nervous, tensed and anxious foreigner in a dangerous country. We see more chaos during this stage which further establishes the chaos in the country.

Mendez then meets the hostages, who have been staying at the Canadian ambassador’s house in Tehran. Initially, they do not trust Mendez to go along with his plan of posing as a film crew as they fear it may not work. They even figured out the he told them a fake name  if anything were to go wrong.

However, Mendez wins their trust by being honest and telling them his true identity and such. They all agree to go ahead with the plan.

Towards the end of the film, we see the tense scenes at the airport as Mendez and the hostages try to escape Iran. And as expected, they all make it through to home soil in the end and the film tells the audience that they all continue to live happily back home.

In the early stages of the film, the music played is upbeat and energetic, especially the scenes in Hollywood where Mendez meets with producers and creates ‘Argo’ the fake movie. This shows us the hope that was present in the early stages of the plan to help the hostages in Iran as well as getting the audience to understand the differences between America and Iran, where dramatic silences are preferred to music. This contrast of sounds used in the two countries solidifies the tension and chaos in Iran.

On the topic of camera, shots are usually steady and composed when shot in America and the opposite in Iran, especially in the shots of rioting and violence. This is used to convey the disorder and distress in the foreign country.

Similarly, bland and dark lighting is used to show Iran while bright and striking colours are shown in Hollywood. This also tells the audience about the situation in Iran.

In conclusion, Argo is a heart-racing and emotionally attaching film that jumps between America and Iran with many, many contrasts. These contrasts are used to mirrors the respective moods and atmosphere of the country and is successful in doing so to a large extend. In a nutshell, it is not a surprise that Argo was critically and commercially successful with the screenplay, camera movement and music keeps the audience tensed and up-to-date with the moods.


Section 4: Technical Skills


What are the resources required for your film production (think about equipment, props, actors, location etc) 

  • Actors
  • All required set props
  • Cups/Mugs, etc.
  • Actors clothing

THE END Emer Daly Script




What is your key role and what are the skills and equipment required to fulfil it?

 My key role is to


What is your supporting role and what are the skills and equipment required to fulfil it?


 Post-production supporting role – behind the scenes editor: The End – Behind the Scenes


How do you feel you performed your roles on set? What were your strengths and what were any challenges you faced? 



How do you think your skills and knowledge developed in this role? Give examples 




Following completion of the Film Academy, please give examples of film production skills that you would like to develop. Did you have any particular strengths or weaknesses on the course? 

Section 3: Working Relationships


Why is teamwork important when working on a film production?



How did you develop good working relationships with your crew members? Give examples



Were there any problems you needed to overcome? Give examples



What qualities are needed to work well with others on a film production?

Debrief minutes The End

Debrief Notes Spaghetti 29.10.17

BFI Production Meeting Summary Oct 17

Spaghetti – Behind the Scenes

The End – Behind the Scenes

Section 2: Professional Development


Please upload or summarise the crew test you did with Rupert

Director – oversees the creative aspects of a film

Producer – creates conditions for film-making

Location manager – oversees the location department and its staff

Casting director – helps in choosing the actors for the characters in the film

Production manager – controls the budget of the film and how the money is spent

Assistant director – controls the set and the health and safety of everyone in the crew

Director of photography (DOP) – Chief of camera and lighting crew of the film

Camera operator – physically operates the camera for the film

Focus puller – keeps the shots in the film in focus

Clapper loader – logs the shots with the clapper

Sound mixer – controls the level of sounds picked up by the boom

Boom operator – physically operates the device that captures the sound of a film

Editor – assembles the shots into a coherent film

Script supervisor – controls the continuity through the scenes


 Describe the structure and interrelationships of the production department. You can use a diagram or similar if you wish 


Role Allocations Spaghetti

Role Allocations The End



Describe at least 2 potentional progression routes into the film industry (e.g. university, apprenticeships, entry level work, film festivals etc)



What do you plan to do when the academy is finished?



Briefly describe the job of one of your tutors, and what they have done in their career





What is the wider creative media sector? (think about music, costume, advertising, animation, theatre, games etc)



Explain how film production connects to the wider creative media sector

***you might find the following link helpful for completing this section: 

Section 1: Film Industry

This is the post excerpt.


What is it like working in the film industry?

Working in the film industry is a demanding and challenging job. There is a great deal of pressure on the workers as they would receive much criticism if the audience does not like their work. In addition to this, it is also very tiring; shoots can last a whole day and the worker may not be allowed much rest between shoots.

Give 10 examples of qualities you need to work in the film industry

  1. Creativity
  2. Dedication
  3. Flexibility
  4. Humility
  5. Communication
  6. Drive
  7. Decisiveness
  8. Patience
  9. Vision
  10. Problem solving

***The links below may help if you need more info after your masterclass with Rupert:

Useful for job roles and progression as well as information about the industry

Good introduction to working in the industry

Further articles:
10 commandments of film making
Seven arts of working in film
Essential personal traits of filmmakers
Top 10 qualities of a great filmmaker



Why is time management important in the film industry? 

Good time management reduces stress and complaints. In addition to this, keeping in planned time may also save the producers money on the film set. 

Give at least 4 examples of good time management skills

  1. Goal setting
  2. Prioritization
  3. Self-awareness
  4. Self-motivation
  5. Focus
  6. Decision making

***please upload the call sheets for your two shoots, and any other production documentation (schedules etc)

BFI Academy CALLSHEET Spaghetti 29 Oct

BFI Academy CALLSHEET The End 26 Oct (1)


Describe the key aspects of health and safety when working on film productions 

 The health and safety of the cast and crew is paramount to a successful production. The film would gain bad reputation if anything was to happen and the producers of the film (and others responsible) could be sued and tried. More important than this, human life could be put in danger if appropriate measures are not made. 

Describe at least 3 health and safety considerations for your own film

  • Wires and cables need to be appropriately placed so that crew do not trip over them – crew also NEED to be aware of the cables beforehand
  • Equipment used on the set (camera and other electronics) need to be checked to be safe to use
  • Stunts (if any) should only be conducted with proper safety measures

***please upload the risk assessment for your primary shoot

BFI Academy Risk Assessment SPAGHETTI 29 Oct

BFI Academy Risk Assessment THE END 26 Oct

1.4 & 1.5 


***please summarise or upload the copyright information you learned in your first editing class with Tom


Why does copyright law exist?

Copyright exists so that the original creator of a piece of work, whether it be music, video, book, etc., has full creative rights over it and other people cannot steal it.

What kind of work is covered by copyright?

 All original work, such as literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, sound recordings, films, etc., can be protected by copyright.

What might happen if you were to use copyrighted material in your film?

 If caught and convicted of copyright infringement, the penalty in the UK can be up to several months in prison or a hefty price depending of the severity of the infringement.

How can you make sure not to infringe copyright law in your film?

 Make sure that ALL the parts used in the film are original or used with the permission of the original content creator.

How has copyright law affected your film production?

Copyright meant that in our film, we could not use any soundtrack or clip that we found online. We had to either create original content or use content with its creator’s permission.

***You might also find the following links useful to complete this section: