Sequence Analysis

We mean by sequence analysis the close and detailed analysis of a segment of film that functions as a distinct narrative unit. This could broadly be defined as the filmic equivalent of a chapter in a novel, or a scene in a play. Sequence analyses can frequently be found in articles or books on French cinema. A recent example is a university textbook by Francis Vanoye and Anne Goliot-Lete (1992), which takes the reader systematically through sequence analysis, as well as the analysis of a whole film; unfortunately, for our purposes, the films analysed are not French.36 Calqued from the French literary tradition of the explication de texte (analysis of a literary passage), sequence analyses were developed mainly during the 1970s by film academics, as was explained in Chapter 2, and have remained a staple of Film Studies in the French arena.

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