Film as History Project

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Film as History Project

Moviemakers have often attempted to accurately portray historical time periods and events. For this project you will write a 5-7 page critical analysis of a selected historical film. In addition to viewing the film you must also research the period, event, or topic, and include any historical inaccuracies that may be found in the film. In order to find these inaccuracies you will also need to do some research. Below is a list of criteria that needs to be addressed in your paper. Your paper MUST include a works cited (MLA format) with a minimum of three references. To cite all sources, go to Do not use any encyclopedias or “.com” websites. All papers must be typed with the following standards: one inch margins, 12-point Times New Roman font, numbered pages.

Due Date: April 5, 2012 (Papers will not be accepted after April 16, 2012. Late papers will receive a deduction of 5 points for each day that it is late)
Outline of Paper

A. Title Page (not included in the required 5-7 pages)

Must include a title of your work in the center with picture underneath (be creative, don’t just list the movie name). At the bottom of the page on separate lines: your name, the course, my name and the date it is due.

B. Introduction (1 page)

  1. Describe the time period being portrayed; identify the event or events going on in the United States which are related to the film.

    1. What is going on in the United States at this time?

    2. How is the time period being depicted in the film?

    3. What event(s) influenced the event or situation being portrayed in the film?

C. Body of Paper (4-5 pages)

  1. Summarize the plot of the film.

  1. Analyze and discuss the characters in the film.

    1. Who are the main characters in the film?

    2. How do they portray people at this time or the person that they represent?

  1. Appraise the film; discuss and analyze 3 examples of historical accuracy or inaccuracy of the film (this will take a good amount of research and should be most of your paper).

  1. Submission of Paper

Once finished, you must submit your paper to Any plagiarism score of higher than 25% will be an automatic failure.

Go to If you do not have one already, create your own account.
Click on add a class.
Click on US History A

CODE: 4785653

Password: cotter (case sensitive)

Click on US History B

CODE: 4785658

Password: cotter (case sensitive)
You will submit your project on this website ONLY!!

Movie Selections

The selection process will be discussed by your teacher. Students will not be able to choose a movie already selected by another student. Look for the movie soon, if you cannot find it you may need to change your selection

The Gilded Age

America on the Road*

Out of the Depths*

All the King’s Men


The Molly Maguires



The Inheritance

Hester Street

The Godfather: Part II

Picture Bride

The Joy Luck Club

My Family

Far and Away

West Side Story

World War I

Sergeant York

The Court Martial of Bill Mitchell

All Quiet on the Western Front

The Big Parade

The Cardinal


Farewell to Arms

Hearts of the World

Johnny Got His Gun



Shoulder Arms



20s and ‘30s

The Jazz Singer


Inherit the Wind

The Spirit of St. Louis


The Great Ziegfield

Golddiggers of 1933

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

O Brother Where Art Thou?

The Great Gatsby

Sacco and Vanzetti


Scarface (the original not Pacino film)

Road to Perdition

Men of Honor

The Great Depression

Bound for Glory

The Grapes of Wrath

The Helping Hand*

Bonnie and Clyde

The Color Purple

Our Daily Bread

Places in the Heart

The Plow That Broke the Plains

The Sting

To Kill a Mockingbird

Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry


Cinderella Man

World War II/Cold War

All My Sons


Come See the Paradise

Tora! Tora! Tora!

Saving Private Ryan

Post-War Hopes, Cold War Fears*

A Bridge Too Far

Air Force


Destination Tokyo

Guadalcanal Diary


Stalag 17

The Battle of the Bulge

Band of Brothers (pick an episode)

The House on 92nd Street

Judgment at Nuremberg

The Longest Day

The Purple Heart

They Were Expendable

Thirty Seconds over Tokyo

Wake Island

Dr. Strangelove

Memphis Belle


Fail Safe

PT 109

To Hell and Back

Fat Man and Little Boy

Ike: The War Years

Mac Arthur

Twelve O’clock High

South Pacific

The Manchurian Candidate (Original)

Thin Red Line

On the Beach

The Russians are Coming!

Eleanor, First Lady of the World

The Front

Missiles of October

A League of their Own


The Great Raid

The Great Escape

Rocky IV

Pearl Harbor

Flags of Our Fathers
50s and ‘60s

American Graffiti

Back to the Future

Four Friends

Invasion of the Body Snatchers

The Last Picture Show

Peggy Sue Got Married

Tucker: The Man and His Dreams


October Sky

The Korean War

The Bridges of Toko Ri

Pork Chop Hill

The Steel Helmet

Civil Rights Movement

A Raisin in the Sun

King: Montgomery to Memphis

Eyes on the Prize I

Eyes on the Prize II

Separate but Equal

To Kill a Mockingbird

Nothing but a Man

Change, Change*

Driving Miss Daisy

Malcolm X


Crisis at Central High

The Court of Jackie Robinson

The Long Walk Home

Glory Road

The Vietnam War/1970’s

All the President’s Men

Apocalypse Now

Born on the Fourth July

Coming Home

Full Metal Jacket

Good Morning Vietnam

A Yank in Vietnam

The Green Berets

Alice’s Restaurant

Apollo 13

We Were Soldiers

Getting Straight

Billy Jack


Trial of the Cantonsville Nine

Rolling Thunder

Heaven and Earth


The Boys in Company

The Deer Hunter

Who’ll Stop the Rain


Friendly Fire

A Rumor of War

The Big Chill

The Killing Fields

Alamo Bay


Hamburger Hill

The Iron Triangle



*- these selections are part of a 19-part series called “A Walk Through the 20th Century with Bill Moyers.”
Name: __________________________________________
Grading Rubric

You will be graded on the following criteria.

Area of Analysis

Points Possible

Points Received

Title Page




Body of Paper




Works Cited (MLA Format)


Teacher’s Comments

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