FT2FA-Film Authorship

Module Provider: Film, Theatre and TV
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2016/7

Module Convenor: Prof Lucia Nagib

Email: l.nagib@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:
This module will develop students’ understanding of authorship in cinema through consideration of the main debates around the issue, and through the study of bodies of work directed by one or more filmmakers. It will also place debates around authorship in the context of competing paradigms and practices, such as feminist approaches that emphasise shared authorship, consideration of ideological, industrial and technological contexts, self-reflexive and self-performing authorial practices. Case studies will vary and may include: individual filmmakers who formulated original concepts of cinematic authorship in their films and writings, such as François Truffaut and Nagisa Oshima; directors working in (and beyond) the studio system, such as Douglas Sirk and Fritz Lang; directors working across national and transnational contexts (such as Jean Renoir, Luis Buñuel, Michelangelo Antonioni, Yasujiro Ozu); self-questioning works by filmmakers such as Clio Barnard, Alexander Kluge, Eduardo Coutinho and Joshua Oppenheimer. The module will develop students’ knowledge and understanding of key debates which have shaped the study of film and enable students to extend their awareness of film style and skills of close analysis through engaging with specific filmmaking decisions.

The module aims to foster students’ understanding of the debates around authorship in cinema, and of related critical and theoretical approaches; to extend knowledge and understanding of cinema’s narrative traditions, including the contexts of industrial practice; to provide historical insights into cinema’s creative practices; to enhance skills of critical analysis, informed by appropriate analytical frameworks.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module it is expected that students will be able to:
•demonstrate a critical understanding of foundational debates in the study of cinema, including authorship;
•discriminate between historically varied practices in cinema;
•demonstrate a detailed understanding of the development of the work of particular film director(s) and skills in analysing the meaning and aesthetic strategy in relation to the work of particular film director(s);
•demonstrate critical skills in applying theories of authorship in cinema;
•demonstrate through sequence analysis the significance of different areas of detailed decision making in developing a film's effects and meanings;
•develop extended critical arguments in which local detail is related to wider structures of individual movies and to groups of films;
•employ critical understandings of industrial and ideological frameworks in which films were made;
•make informed use of interpretative frameworks introduced or extended in the module;
•relate analysis of films and groups of films to aspects of their contexts, showing a critical awareness of some of the problems and possibilities of relating text to context.

Additional outcomes:
The module plays a significant role in the development of other skills and competencies which are central to the course: oral communication and argument in group situations; appropriate deployment of research using printed and electronic resources; critical analysis and coherent argument; undertaking self-directed, independent work; presentation of written work using IT; identifying and addressing problems in the analysis of film.

Outline content:
See Summary Module Description above.

Global context:
This module explores work and practices in one or more national cinema.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
The normal teaching pattern will be one lecture and one 1 & 1/2 hour seminar per week, plus 2 film screenings.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 9
Seminars 13
Supervised time in studio/workshop 36
Guided independent study 142
Total hours by term 200.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 100

Other information on summative assessment:

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:

    Requirements for a pass:
    A mark of 40% overall.

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Resubmission of failed coursework.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 21 December 2016

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