Movies, TV & Music
Screen Education

Screen Education Spring 2015 (79)

Screen Education is essential reading for those with an interest in media literacy. Produced by educators, scholars and critics, the magazines content is tailored to the primary and secondary classroom, as well as some tertiary-level material, offering a unique and engaging perspective on screen education.

Australian Teachers of Media Incorporated
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4 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
exclusive insights into real life

Best of Enemies Imagine a time when having ideological opposites fiercely debating toe-to-toe on national television was an actual event. This is what happened in 1968 when a television station pitted Gore Vidal against William F. Buckley Jr. in a notorious series of debates that screened in the lounge rooms of American homes during the Republican and Democratic National Conventions. Each considered intellectual heavyweights, the left-leaning Vidal and conservative Buckley were each seen as the other’s nemesis before they were filmed in four 90 minute debates that turned into the political equivalent of a title fight boxing match, with vigorous argument, vicious insults, and even the threat of violence keeping viewers spellbound. Directed by Robert Gordon and Academy-Award winner Morgan Neville (Twenty Feet From Stardom), BEST OF ENEMIES is an entertaining ride…

17 min.
power from a different perspective race, gender and grief in big hero 6

In the opening moments of Disney’s Big Hero 6 (Don Hall & Chris Williams, 2014), we see San Francisco’s iconic Golden Gate Bridge remodelled with Shinto torii arches. Soon we are presented with a metropolis glimmering with lights from cars and buildings, the city’s ferry building announcing that we are in the Port of San Fransokyo. This urban landscape is filled with skyscrapers with neon signs displaying katakana symbols, and, upon moving from sky to ground level, we are brought into a seedy alley between buildings marked with hiragana and kanji. Immediately, the film announces that we have entered an excitingly different but recognisable world – a sensorially immersive blend of Tokyo and San Francisco. As Hall describes it, this geographic ‘mashup’ ‘felt more interesting as a setting – more playful…

23 min.
the future is now revisiting the present in back to the future

Here we are, living in the future. For children of the 1980s (or for children with a weakness for that decade’s cinema), 2015 is a very special year. This is the year in which the cool kids scoot about on hoverboards, clad in their self-adjusting Nike shoes, while their parents zoom overhead in flying cars. From the seats of a 1980s cinema, the future looked pretty marvellous. Sadly, the future ain’t what it used to be. The predictions of the Back to the Future trilogy (Robert Zemeckis, 1985–1990), in which Marty McFly (Michael J Fox) and Doc Emmett Brown (Christopher Lloyd) take their time-travelling DeLorean to 21 October 2015, have mostly been exposed as hopelessly optimistic. But thirty years on, the films provide a unique opportunity to see how we portray future,…

14 min.
quick plays studying short sports-based documentaries

In August 2014, ESPN’s 30 for 30 Shorts won an Emmy for Outstanding Short-format Nonfiction Program. Much like ESPN’s original Peabody Award–winning 30 for 30 series, which documented thirty years of stories drawn from major sporting events and related happenings in sports culture from 1979 to 2009, the latter series offers compelling nonfiction stories at the intersection of sports and society – only these films are short, with runtimes ranging from as little as six minutes to as long as nearly twenty-three minutes. Short films in the series, like their feature-length counterparts, offer focused examinations of specific developments, figures and events from the vast world of sports. Topics range from accounts of unlikely American football heroes and fashion-forward college basketball programs to stories of youth sports scandals, inviting the exploration…

1 min.
other films in espn’s 30 for 30 shorts series

An Immortal Man (Josh Koury & Myles Kane, 2015) http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=12340903 This short explores the unusual story of famed American baseball player Ted Williams and his children’s efforts to preserve him following his death. Arthur and Johnnie (Tate Donovan, 2013) http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=9584328 In this film, Donovan reveals the sacrifice Johnnie Ashe made to ensure that his brother, American tennis star Arthur Ashe, could pursue his dreams on the tennis court rather than fight in the Vietnam War. Fields of Fear (Alex Gibney, 2014) http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=11545113 This short presents the story of Mackey Sasser, a Major League Baseball catcher whose career was felled by anxiety that left him unable to throw the ball back to the pitcher. From Harlem with Love (Matt Ogens, 2014) http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=10777821 Here, Ogens documents the role the Harlem Globetrotters played as unlikely goodwill ambassadors while bringing their unique brand of basketball…

10 min.
great escapes a study guide to the secret life of walter mitty

MARK RAFIDI looks at how Walter’s transformation is developed through other characters, his backstory and his imagination, and how the film can be used to prompt students in Years 7 to 10 to reflect on their own explorations of self. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (Ben Stiller, 2013) follows the eponymous character’s transformation from living in a dream world to one where he is bold enough to shape his own identity. Walter (played by Stiller) works as a negative assets manager for Life magazine, which is undergoing a process of modification, driven by a technological shift: it is transitioning from a print product to a digital one. For Life’ final print edition, noteworthy photographer Sean O’Connell (Sean Penn) sends a telegram informing the staff that he has captured the quintessential…