In cinema, a trope is what The Art Direction Handbook for Film defines as "a universally identified image imbued with several layers of contextual meaning creating a new visual metaphor". It is an element of film semiology and connects between denotation and connotation. Films reproduce tropes of other arts and also make tropes of their own. George Bluestone wrote in Novels Into Film that in producing adaptations, film tropes are "enormously limited" compared to literary tropes. Bluestone said, "[A literary trope] is a way... of packed symbolic thinking which is specific to imaginative rather than to visual activity... [when] converted into a literal image, the metaphor would seem absurd."
- Rizzo, Michael (2014). The Art Direction Handbook for Film (2nd ed.). Focal Press. p. 513. ISBN 978-0-415-84279-2.
- Monaco, James (1981). How to Read a Film: The Art, Technology, Language, History, and Theory of Film and Media. Oxford University Press. p. 140. ISBN 978-0-19-502802-7.
- Bluestone, George (1957). Novels Into Film. Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 22. ISBN 978-0-8018-7386-7.
- McDonald, Tamar Jeffers. Hollywood Catwalk: Exploring Costume and Transformation in American Film. I.B. Tauris. p. 41. ISBN 978-1-84885-040-8.
- Ehrat, Johannes (2005). Cinema and Semiotic: Pierce and Film Aesthetics, Narration, and Representation. Toronto Studies in Semiotics and Communication (2nd ed.). University of Toronto Press. ISBN 978-0-8020-3912-5.
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