Martin Scorsese's Goodfellas

Short Paper Prompt – Traditional and New Criticism
Students select a film or video to analyze using techniques and approaches from the class
readings and lectures. A prompt will be provided. Each analysis should be between 4 to 6
pages. Papers must be typewritten using MLA style. All papers must be submitted
electronically via Blackboard. No e-mailed or hard copies will be accepted. All papers must
include a works cited or bibliography in the same document. Prompts will be provided. For
your first paper, you should choose an argument or arguments from the text (Parker).
Here’s how you should proceed.
Select a film that you admire. It can be documentary or narrative. It can be a popular movie,
television episode or web series. It’s best to pick something that you feel strongly about. Even
better if you can make a case for the film’s significance in terms of technology, critical
acclaim, popular success, cult status, artistic achievement, etc.
Begin by briefly analyzing your film from the perspective of literary analysis. cf. the critical
reading of the Purdue OWL.
Describe the way that you want to approach reading the film (traditional or new criticism).
Why is this approach best? What insights or support does Parker provide for that reading?
An excellent paper will back up analysis and arguments with examples from the chosen film
and from Parker.