Film Studies

Film Studies is an exciting area of study which critically engages with one of the major art forms of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. You will develop some key skills in analysis and reflection, examining films from across the world, in addition to their production contexts and audiences. A rewarding aspect of the course will be your application of knowledge and understanding to the development of creative and original ideas for new film products – presented visually or in scripted form.

The AS has two units and the A2 a further two units. A wide range of films will be studied to support these units. The course is assessed through written examination and practical coursework assignments. Film Studies is not an easy option; you will have to absorb a high level of technical knowledge in a short time.

AS Level

Unit 1: FM1 20 % (40%) Coursework
Exploring Film Form
▪ One analysis of how the micro aspects in a chosen extract from a film produce meanings and responses. You will analyse a sequence from a film of your choice, explore the purpose of the sequence and explain how the filmmaker is making meaning or triggering emotions through the use of cinematography, mise en scene, editing, sound, lighting and colour.
(1500 words) (30 marks)
▪ One creative project based on a film sequence or short film. You will develop an outline for an original film idea. This can be expressed in written or photographic form.
(50 marks: sequence or short film [40]/reflective analysis [10])

Unit 2: FM2 30% (60%) Examination
2½ hours written paper
British and American Film

Three questions, one from each section:
Section A: Response to stimulus material which explores producers and audiences of film (40)
Section B: Topics in British Film: Ealing Studios (40)
Section C: US Film – Comparative study of two films (40) e.g. two different American youth pictures
A Level (AS + a further 2 units)

Unit 3: FM3 25 % Coursework
Film Research and Creative Projects
 a small-scale research project (40)
 a creative project (60 – 45 product/15 reflective analysis)

Unit 4: FM4 25 % Examination:
2¾ hour written paper
Varieties of Film Experience: Issues and Debates
Three questions, one from each section:

Section A: World Cinema topics (35): Empowering Women
Section B: Spectatorship topics (35): Early Cinema before 1917
Section C: Single Film Critical Study: Modern Times

Film Studies teaches high order analysis and, as such, supports other subjects. It combines particularly well with Art, English Language, English Literature, Drama and Theatre Studies and History.

Most universities now offer Film or Media courses as part of the curriculum. In recent years it has proved to be one of the fastest growth areas within higher education. Film Studies develops a keen analytical ability which will provide a strong foundation for further study in Film Theory, Film History, Film Criticism and other arts, multimedia, humanities and social science courses.