Film Studies

Why study Film Studies?

Film is a primary source of entertainment but also a mirror that reflects the way society evolves. It is constantly changing and updating, both in terms of how it is made and how we access it. In Film Studies you will be encouraged to explore how different genres are constructed; the industries that produce films and what films can tell us about the culture and context in which they are produced. You will also have the opportunity to develop practical skills and the department also arranges trips and workshops to support the topics being covered in the classroom.

Film Studies is a contemporary, artistic, dynamic and highly analytical subject, perfect for students wishing to combine the academia of English with the creativity and expression of creative arts subjects.

What will I study?

The course is based on an understanding of the key film concepts of language, representation, audiences and institutions.

You will cover a range of topics related to different film industries from around the world. You will explore the history of Hollywood and compare this with American independent films as well as historical and contemporary British films. You will also study a number of cinematic ‘new waves’, including the silent era and European film, as well as short and documentary films. This work will consist of in-depth, analytical and often comparative case studies. Having watched a film, we will research, discuss, analyze, compare and write about. This work develops many of the skills that you will have learned through the study of English Literature GCSE as you will need to write about each case study in detail in each of the exams.

The coursework is an opportunity for you to stretch your creative muscles by applying what you have learned about different types of film to a project of your own. You can choose to plan and film a short sequence or write an original screenplay for a film of your design. This work will test your technical skills as well as your imaginative ideas. Your practical work will also be accompanied by a detailed analytical evaluation.

How will I be assessed?

The A Level is assessed through the completion of two external exams, making up 70% of the course. The coursework unit will contribute 30% of your overall grade and will consist of either a short sequence from an original film or a screenplay and an evaluative analysis.

Entry requirements

You need to have a minimum of a C at GCSE in English and (if studied) Media Studies.

You should also have an active interest in film.

Course expenses

No deposit is requested for the use of equipment, but if a student wishes to use camera equipment off site, a parent/guardian must sign a letter agreeing to cover full replacement costs of the equipment if it is lost or damaged. The only other cost is the cost of any department trips.

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