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The Question – This quarter we have screened films by Wes Anderson and the Coen Brothers. These films included “O Brother, Where Art Thou,” “The Big Lebowski,” “A Serious Man,” “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs,” “The Darjeeling Limited,” “The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou,” “Moonrise Kingdom,” and “The Grand Budapest Hotel.” You have selected one additional film by either the Coen Brothers or Wes Anderson. And, we have screened segments of other film, including “The Last Temptation of Christ,” “The Exorcist,” “First Reformed,” “True Grit,” and “The Royal Tenenbaums.”

In a well-organized and well-written essay discuss these two films [ the titles of one Coen Brothers film and one Wes Anderson film will appear here], one Coen Brothers (Moonrise Kingdom) and one Wes Anderson film of your choice(Darjeeling), and the additional film you have chosen to study(Fargo), with regard to the following themes that have been central to our class discussions: 1) the quest for authenticity; 2) the family; 3) the sacred in the profane. As you consider and then write your response, keep in mind the following issues – the characteristics of myth, the role of humor in these films, and how the filmmakers use frame narratives, hyper-reality and nostalgia. Finally, do you think that these films suggest or confirm that film is a form of contemporary myth? Please note that your essay will address five films (two we choose, two you choose, and the additional film you have watched outside of class). However, you may also wish to discuss the other films of which we have only screened segments.

Your essay will be evaluated on how completely you analyze and interpret the films you include in your essay. This means how you have integrated lecture and reading materials into your essay. Make certain that you have thoroughly reviewed your reading materials.

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