Final Assignment Description

For my final assignment, I will be analyzing the use of torture in action/war films. I am choosing to analyze this topic because it is a very controversial one in our society today, and I believe that both how it is done and how it is represented in these films play a major role in swaying the publics opinion on the topic of torture. In order to analyze this topic, I will be using multiple different scenes from certain war and action movies that involve torture. Some of those movies are: Lone Survivor, Taxi to the Dark Side,  and Unbroken. I will use the keywords Ideology, Representation, and Power to analyze my topic. This topic speaks to media, culture, and identity mostly through its portrayal in the media. Many people have very certain views about torture and whether or not is is morally permissible. In the United States, it seems as though the majority of people would argue that it is an immoral tactic that is unlawfully used, and so the culture created around torture is one of disgust and disagreement. In relation to Identity, I feel it is safe to say that American forces, specifically in regards to how they are represented in the media, seem to not hold back when it comes to using torture, which creates an Identity that suggests we are brutalists or even savages. I plan to analyze the scenes in these films using multiple different sources, including M/S 152-157, M/S 166-170, M/S 188-192, M/S 192-209, the movie Zero Dark Thirty, as well as any other scholarly sources found online.


– What is the scope of the project?

My project uses multiple scenes from different war films and documentaries that include depictions and raw footage of torture as used my the armed forces of the United States of America

– What is the video’s argument?

The videos argument is that by showing such footage and depictions, the media is exposing the United States to the rest of the world as a country without morals that will take away basic human rights and essentially go to any extent in order to extract information from people of interest. For a long time, and even still, the United States has censored this type of media from reaching the public, but citizens have the right to know what is truly going on.

– Is the argument specific? Precise? Supportable?

My argument is specific in the sense that these representations are accurate, and the footage used in these films is evidence that such crimes have taken place in our society, which also makes the argument supportable.

– Are the keywords appropriate? Are there better keywords to apply?

I believe that the keywords I have chosen are appropriate; however, I am considering using the keyword censorship instead of ideology moving forward.

– Can one accomplish these goals in 3-5 minutes and be convincing? If not, how can the project be further refined?

I am confident that I can accomplish my goals in posing a strong argument within the 3 to 5 minute timeframe I will have.

– Are there other sources that should be included?

I have been doing some research online, and there are definitely a few other online news sources that I will draw evidence to in order to support my argument.

One thought on “Final Assignment Description

  • April 4, 2019 at 12:52 pm

    This is a great extension of a conversation that we began in class. I think keeping the films focused on hollywood feature films will help keep this project focused. The idea of using news sources that offer commentary about the role of these films sounds great; this will be important evidence for you arguments as it will show how the ideologies of the films circulate through our culture. I think sticking with ideology over censorship is probably the way to go. Censorship might just be too much for 3-5 minutes.

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