FS/EU 335 - Visiting Europe In Cinema

This course is an examination of contemporary cinema from Europe and asks a key question: what do national cinema products reveal about national identity, culture, and values?  The course will combine a study of the economics and cultural politics of national cinemas in Europe, and their existence within a global marketplace of film. Through the study of film festivals, and the study of filmmakers and their films, students will have an opportunity to examine how minor cinemas evolve as significant for national audiences and how they convey aspects of culture, language, and social life across national boundaries.

Central questions addressed by the course include:

  • What are the conditions for European film production and distribution of cinema within and beyond the nation state?
  • Why are national film cultures important to retain?
  • What function and value do film festivals have in promoting films?
  • What do representations of film cultures both in-nation and beyond nation tell audiences of cultural values across the world?

The course will draw upon literature about European distribution including film festivals, and where possible give direct experience of film festivals (either through following a program remotely as with Venice (September); or Berlin (February); Cannes (May).

The Course Tutor has excellent connections with the British Film Institute, with SodaPictures and the National Film and Television School, and would like to use these connections in creating suitable trips or talks with those working in/around the industry at production, distribution, or exhibition.

Students will commence the course with an introduction to concepts of national and transnational cinema, current and extensive debates in Film Studies. This will be situated in a short study of the economics of film production, distribution, and exhibition. As a means of exploring how films move from the national to the international, the course will place an early focus on European Film Festivals, what they do and how they function.

The majority of the course offers an opportunity to discuss contrasting representations of three or four European countries through the study of recent contemporary national cinema output that has had success in the international arena. This outline shows films that have achieved success in recent years.

Students are encouraged to make every effort to pursue recommended readings and to undertake original research in their academic writings and must not rely solely on the Internet.

Note: This course is offered during the regular semester and in the summer. For summer sections, the course schedule is condensed, but the content, learning outcomes, and contact hours are the same.

Course Information


European Studies
Film Studies

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