The place of critical theories in film analysis: Making a case for reading films as text

  • Vincent Uche Nnamele
  • Anthony Nnalue


Film, movie, or video often used as a general term to describe series of images presented rapidly through a screen for audience pleasure has come under different scrutiny, modifications and interpretations. The earliest forms of film were created using still images spun rapidly through a wheel, but today, moving objects can now be recorded for film purposes due to technological breakthroughs. These inventions have not only increased the pleasure of the film experience, but have also increased critical questions, interpretations, concept, analyses, and judgments. Every aspect of a film, from pre-production to post-production are now been analysed critically. Each of the elements of a film can now be interpreted and read as a text. While such readings help in better understanding of the films, they also enable one to rate and categorise films. This paper seeks to interrogate the relationship between reading film as a text and the  employment of critical theories. It looks at aspects of film as a text comprising words and symbols with meanings and also interrogates how it influences film theories and critical theories. The paper concludes that subjecting film to critical theory has become imperative in order to liberate the audience from the shackles of conventionalities to enthrone individual pleasure and experience.


Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 2006-6910