Cultural Impact

A. First step. Watch and study the movie and get a sense of the cultural themes. You will probably need to watch the movie again to help with providing supporting evidence.

Paragraph 1: Come up with a thesis, a central idea to discuss and back up with your observations on the various elements of the film. Your thesis should be discussed in the first paragraph of your analysis. This paragraph should explain what the movie has to do with culture and what elements of culture you are discussing. In this paragraph mention the movie’s title, director, and key actors. Ask yourself the questions to help guide your viewing:
• What culture is identified by the movie?
• What elements of culture does this movie represent or portray?
• Does the film reflect on a current event or contemporary issue? It could be the director’s way of engaging in a bigger conversation. Look for ways to relate the content of the film to the “real” world.
• Does the film seem to have a message, or does it attempt to elicit a specific response or emotion from the audience? You could discuss whether or not it achieves its own goals.
• Does the film connect with you on a personal level?

Paragraph 2: Give a brief summary of the plot in which you identify the main characters, describe the setting, and give a sense of the central conflict or point of the movie.

Paragraph 3 -5: Write several paragraphs discussing interesting elements of the movie that support your thesis. Use plenty of examples to back up your points. If you make a statement about the movie, back it up with a descriptive example. Describe the way scenes look, the way a certain person acted, camera angles, and so on. You can quote dialogue to help you make your points. In this way you are giving your readers a feel for the movie and continuing to connect elements to your main theme.

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Paragraph 6: Ending paragraph–your last opportunity to guide the reader. It should tie back to your original thesis and provide some guidance as to the main thesis, elements related to the chapter or the overall course. This paragraph should explain what the movie has to do with culture and with the course.

B. Final Step-Edit your review. Once you’ve finished the first draft, read it through and decide whether it flows well and has the right structure. You may need to shift paragraphs around, delete sentences, or add more material here and there to fill out parts that are stunted.

Give your review at least one editorial pass, and maybe two or three, before you consider it to be editorially sound.
• Ask yourself whether your review has identified a culture and elements of the culture. Did your conclusion tie back in with the initial ideas you proposed?
• Decide whether your review contains enough details about the movie. You may need to go back and add more description here and there to give readers a better sense of what the movie is about and how it relates to culture in psychology.
• Decide whether your analysis contributed something original to this discussion? What will readers gain from reading your analysis that they could not have seen by watching the movie?
• Do you have a cover sheet formatted in APA style?
• Do you have references formatted in APA style?

Personal notes:
A good movie suggestion may be to kill a mockingbird.
Examples of class vocabulary: enculturation and socialization
Textbook: Culture and Psychology By David Matsumoto, Linda Juang

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