The genre theory of film is the study of how films are made and how they work. Genre theorists study movies as a form of communication, which is also a form of human behavior. This means that they look at films to see how they can be understood, both in terms of their cultural context and their immediate audience.
Genre theory helps us understand why some movies are popular while others are not. It also helps us understand why some movies look similar, even when they have very different plots and characters.
What is Genre Theory in Film?
The term "genre" comes from the French word genre, which means kind or type. In film studies, genres are categories that describe certain types of films based on their plot structure, setting, characters, and other elements.
A genre is usually defined by a set of traits that make it distinct from other genres within its category. For example, a science fiction film is set in the future and involves space travel or alien invasion; a horror film contains elements such as ghosts or monsters; a western involves cowboys fighting for justice in an untamed wilderness; etc.
Why is genre theory important in Film?
Genre theory is important because it helps to explain and classify films. The study of genres is also useful for organizing and cataloging films, as well as for understanding the relationships between different films.
There are many different ways to classify genres, but one of the most popular approaches is to use established genre categories such as westerns, horror films or comedies. A film can be classified as a western or thriller if it follows certain conventions associated with those genres. For example, westerns often include scenes in which characters ride horses across open plains or shoot guns at each other during gunfights. Thrillers often include scenes in which characters are chased by criminals or terrorists.
In addition to these conventions, genres also have their own particular set of rules and expectations that must be followed by all movies in that category. For example, a comedy must always be funny while a horror movie must always contain some sort of monster or other villainous character who threatens to kill innocent people for no good reason whatsoever (except maybe because he was born evil). Genres can also be categorized by the type of audience they appeal to.
Why is genre theory a useful approach to the study of film?
The most important reason why genre theory is a useful approach to the study of film is that it allows us to make sense of the complex and diverse reality of cinema, which has so many different genres and subgenres. There are genres that are very specific, like horror movies, westerns and romantic comedies, but there are also more general ones like drama, comedy and documentary.
The second reason is that genres offer us a way to talk about films in terms of their formal characteristics: stories told through the use of certain themes and stylistic devices (settings, costumes, music, camera angles etc.). Genre theory tells us that we can describe these formal characteristics in order to differentiate between different types of films.
Thirdly, film theorists have argued that genres are not fixed categories but change over time as new films are made by experimenting with different kinds of narrative structures or styles. So if you look at horror movies from the 1950s compared with those made today you will see how much they have evolved over time because filmmakers keep trying new things.