A Level Film Studies
A-level Film Studies Transition Project (Summer 2020)
A level Film Studies is a two-year course designed to introduce you to a wide variety of films in order to broaden your knowledge and understanding of film and the range of responses films can generate.
Below is an outline of the key areas of study accompanied by suggested tasks to provide you with an introduction to each topic.
Filmmakers use a range of elements in constructing meaning and generating response from their audience. The key elements of film form consist of cinematography, mise-en-scène, editing, sound and performance.
Task: watch some of the following videos and start a journal of some of the key techniques used by filmmakers and their purpose:
- Cinematography: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=InfcMwcSG3g
- Mise-en-scene: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=clBT7O3A3wI
- Editing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUryfkLSwfM
You will have the opportunity to study mainstream American films from the past and the present as well as a range of recent and contemporary British films, American independent films and global films, both non-English language and English language.
Task 2: Broaden your horizons and watch a film from each of the below categories and write a short 1-paragraph review for each:
- A black and white film produced before 1970
- A British film produced after 2000
- A short film
- A subtitled film
- A feature length documentary
Use the following streaming services to find your films (they offer a free trial or are free):
- BFI Player: https://player.bfi.org.uk/subscription
- Mubi: https://mubi.com/t/web/global/3qxuxj2
- Netflix: https://www.netflix.com/
- Short of the Week: https://www.shortoftheweek.com/
Production work is also a crucial part of the course and it is hoped that by studying a diverse range of films from several different contexts you can apply this knowledge and understanding to your own film making / screenwriting.
1. Learn the basics of screenplay formatting here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZszextv6yE
2. Subscribe to this free online scriptwriting software: https://www.celtx.com/
3. Write the opening 3-5 pages of an original idea for a short film
- Use your phone or camera to experiment with the different video recording techniques explored in the following article/video: https://nofilmschool.com/2018/02/watch-5-clever-tricks-better-smartphone-cinematography
Please send your work to email@example.com, I look forward to hearing from you.