This is an extensive survey of cinema which foregrounds its historical and international diversity. The module is designed to engage with three key areas: cinema as an aesthetic or artistic medium; cinema history and its social contexts, ranging from the late-nineteenth to the twentieth-first centuries; and film and media theory, looking at cinematic media (from celluloid to digital) both as cultural productions and as texts received, and consumed, by audiences. The module will cover a range of cinema history, from nineteenth-century photographic technology and early cinema projection, to the rise of synch sound, and finally to more recent trends in genre and production innovation. In the first term, central concepts of cinematic form will be explored, such as editing, montage, mise-en-scene, sound, lighting, and camera movement. The second term will delve more deeply into theoretical issues, including concepts of genre, auteur, technology, and postmodernity. The module features an extensive lecture programme over the year, delivered by Film Studies staff. Every student should attend the weekly lecture/screening, and seminar.

Background in writing for the humanities and/or media studies is recommended. Students registered for any film studies degree, for which LT121 is a pre-requisite, have priority in applying for the places available on this course.

Module Supervisor's and Tutors' Research into Subject Area

Lecturers on LT121 are leading international writers and researchers in film and media studies. One of the key texts on the module, Film Analysis: A Norton Reader (expanded edition 2013), is used worldwide as a film teaching and research resource; edited by the LT121 module supervisor, it contains useful essays written by lecturers who contribute to the module. These lecturers have themselves published widely in areas such as early cinema, American film, Russian cinema, World Cinema, and independent cinema; and it is these areas, among others, that LT121 students will explore in their own research essays.