Date of Degree


Document Type


Degree Name



Liberal Studies


Edward Miller

Subject Categories

Film and Media Studies


Film, Gaming, Narrative, Spectacle, War


This essay, using as a jump-off point François Truffaut's view that it is impossible to make a true anti-war film, examines the degree to which certain Hollywood films about war treat the subject as a spectacle for the audience. With the aid of critical articles discussing the war film's presentation from the standpoint of narrative and aesthetic, three films are examined for their ability (or lack thereof) to curtail the tendency of war as entertainment. Furthermore, with the increasing prominence of the videogame as a narrative medium, as well as the prevalence of game narratives dealing with war, the question of the subject's impact being lost on the audience is just as relevant. To that end, this thesis explores examples of games that follow mystifying representations of war in movies along with other titles that reflexively question the player's experience of the subject. It is, on the whole, an effort to apply aspects of film studies to the younger medium.