The ways in which the film industry, critics, academics, and audiences classify film, forming structures that shape the production and marketing of particular films and manage the expectations of both critics and audiences towards them. The classic film genres are westerns, comedies, musicals, and war films, with thrillers, crime or detective films, film noir, horror, and science fiction also prominent. The major film genres have distinctive textual features including subject matter and themes, setting, narrative form, characterization, iconography, and filmic techniques. Some tend to be defined primarily by their subject matter (e.g. detective films), some by their setting (e.g. the western), and others by their narrativeform (e.g. the musical). In addition to textual features, different genres also involve different functions, pleasures, audiences, modes of involvement, styles of interpretation, and text-reader relationships. Many are hybrid genres: for example, romantic comedy or action adventure, problematizing the notion that genres can have clear and distinct borders.
http://www.screenonline.org.uk/film/id/446108/index.html Film genres and themes (BFI)
Subjects: Media Studies.