Schematic and Artefact

The new task, to create:

  • A Schematic- In this case, a schematic is a visual representation of a film, in the form of an illustrated diagram or system(similar to those used for underground and metro stations). Although it may look complex, it gets the point of the film across in a universally understandable way. Using Vogler as inspiration, you can liken a schematic to a ‘Major Nerve Ganglion‘. The strands of history, character and plot are intertwined to form something of substance, like a thread leading to a ball of wool. From this one diagram, one should be able to understand a whole movie without actually watching it. Brilliant!

Having presented about Phil Campbell last semester, I was excited to try out his ‘totem’ technique. I had found it fascinating how the team plotted out the original storyline of The Godfather and the characters involved in each section; not as a way to better understand the film itself, but to understand where the free space in the story was. In other words, their interest was in what the characters were doing off screen. In this time, they could create a new and exciting game that the viewers had never seen before.


It’s an exciting thought that there is so much more behind our film than what meets the eye and that through the schematic, we might be able to expose some of that story-goodness. In essence, we can re-build the world around the characters and their seemingly linear storyline.

  • An Artefact-Again, in this context the word ‘artefact’ can mean something entirely different to what it usually does. Our artefact will be an object made by us that depicts something of reference to our film, its history and its culture. Which thankfully, we are not short of!


Our Film-Tokyo Story (1953)


Tokyo Story is a 1953 Japanese film directed by Yasujirō Ozu,

often called “the most Japanese of Japanese filmmakers,” made films about everyday life

Slant Magazine

On initial release, the film was deemed ‘too Japanese’ to do well, yet has since been heralded as ‘best film of all time‘ (Sight and Sound Magazine, 2012).

Despite my love for Japanese artwork and style, I initially had my doubts. The film seemed long, boring(?), and old fashioned. However upon reading that ‘on the directors’ poll, it was 17th in 1992, tied at number 16 with Psycho and The Mirror in 2002‘ (British Film Institute 1992,2002), I wasn’t as reluctant to watch it. If it can tie with Psycho, it must be ok…Right?

An interesting feature is that Tokyo Story is actually the third instalment in a trilogy of films called  the “Noriko trilogy” by Ozu—the others are Late Spring and Early Summer  ‘in each of which Hara portrays a young woman named Noriko. Though the three Norikos are distinct, unrelated characters, they are linked primarily by their status as single women in postwar Japan.’


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