Between now and the exam: PRACTICE! PRACTICE! PRACTICE!
You know what you know, so now it’s time to focus on your planning and answering technique. ANSWER THE QUESTION
“What Key Terms do I need to Revise?”
This is a great website and it shows you how to put together a good response for Section A: TV Drama Analysis
Here’s a playlist of TV drama sequences to practice on between now and Thursday:
Have a go at making notes during the extracts. Repeat the viewing 3-4 times!
Section B: Institutions and Audiences
What to include in your exam answer
You should collect notes, facts and quotes for Eon Productions and Between the Eyes/Film London Microwave making reference to films by both companies (we should aim to have two films per Production Company). You should be prepared to compare E and BTE/FLM in your exam answer stating differences/ similarities between them in Production/ Distribution/ Marketing/ Exhibition.
- Who is responsible for production (companies, names, style of company etc.)?
- Type of institution (in line with the BFI categories)
- Money (funding, budget, overall expenditure, predicted revenue and revenue)
- Filming (how is it filmed in today’s ever changing media – cameras/ film reel/ HD, DV)
- Type of story (is it typical to the production company, what type of genre, does it fulfil a real representation of Britain?)
- Stars (celebrity, typical to that company)
- Directors (well known, unknown, style)
- Companies (who are they owned by, who are they associated with, how do they fit into the BFI categories)
- Cinema (how is the film distributed to cinemas, what is the impact of digital technology?)
- DVD/ BLU Ray (how are these distributed and by who, what is the impact of digital technology?)
- Internet (what changes has this made to distribution)
- Convergence (how does this affect distribution)
- Piracy (how will digital technology impact on this, how does this affect distribution?)
- Audience (this should be clearly researched – who is the target audience, what strategies to advertising companies use to reach audiences, how do audiences make decisions on the films they watch?)
- Synergy (what impact does this have on marketing of a film?)
- Advertising (how is a film advertised, what expense would be spent, what impact does advertising have on the success of a film?)
- Internet (how has digital technology changed the marketing of a product?)
- Digital Technology (how does this impact on the way we view a film- in cinemas and out?)
- 35mm film (who uses this to show a film and why?)
- Hollywood vs. British Film (what do people in the UK ultimately want to watch and why, what is the ratio of Brit to US films on offer at a cinema, how long is the run time of a Brit film compared to US?)
The Night Before Exam
Get some rest, set yourself a small, achievable revision target so that you feel like you’ve achieved something and are more relaxed.
Eat well and keep hydrated – save the boozing for after the exam period.
A good breakfast will sustain you, not too much sugar otherwise you’ll hit a low in the exam.
Remember that the examiner has a mark scheme for the question you’re answering – answer the question!
If a question baffles you, don’t panic, just examine it and underline the key words. Ask yourself what it could be asking and define this in your intro. It’s your essay!
Brief plans help, either bullet point forms or even mind maps/spider diagrams can give you a visual reference point/aid.
Avoid waffling or adopting a chatty/informal tone with the examiner. He/She is not your best mate and probably despises children, only marking exam scripts to support their addictions or fund their latest DIY project. Use good English, impress them with accurate referencing and present your work neatly.
Take a pen you’re comfortable using with you (and carry a spare!)
Review your time during the exam, have your own watch and be strict about answering questions within time limits. If this is a weakness, answer the questions that carry most marks first.
Check over your essay five minutes before the end of the paper. Use bullet points and asterixes * to add additional information or give clarity to important points.
Dress comfortably – exam halls can either be cold or sweaty. Tissues are always useful to have.
Don’t talk to students who are or appear more academic than you, before or after the exam – partly because it’s all intellectual bravado (see The Apprentice) and partly because it can affect your confidence levels. No-one likes exams except the businesses who print the recycled exam answer booklets you write on.
Go away, cool off and relax before telling someone that they answered the exam wrong