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This subject provides students with a comprehensive introduction to the study of film language and theory. It is organised around these two separate but related areas. The film language component covers two interrelated topics that are essential for an understanding of the cinema; film aesthetics and film history. The subject begins with the early cinema and progresses through to an analysis of contemporary Hollywood. Key topics of narrative, editing, sound, mise-en-scene, cinematography and the studio system are studied in this historical context. The film theory component of the subject presents a study of the key theories, including: genre theory, auteurism, the classic text, gender, psychoanalysis, entertainment and new media theory, that have informed film aesthetics and the history of the cinema.
Intended learning outcomes
On successful completion of this subject, students should have:
- an understanding of the important role that film and screen media have performed for over a century and apply critical and analytical skills to examine how screen culture changes as a result of changing social and cultural contexts;
- an understanding of the fundamental aspects of film form, including key techniques of film style and narration;
- the ability to communicate effectively in a variety of oral and written formats and utilise research practices specific to Screen Studies that are applied with intellectual honesty and a respect for ethical values;
- a comprehension of key concepts in the history of cinema and the significance of social, national, stylistic and aesthetic movements that inform and explicate that history; and
- consolidated knowledge of approaches to audio-visual literacy and an understanding of interdisciplinary methodologies that may be applied to evaluate screen media.
At the completion of this subject, students should gain the following generic skills:
- be skilled in critical thinking and analysis;
- possess effective written communication skills; and
- have an understanding of social, ethical and cultural context.
Last updated: 16 June 2020