Being a film student
Why do young people go to university to study film? Adam Simcox, a young man from our locality, who is one of that breed, will seek to answer this question – but speaking only for himself. He’ll talk about the course he is on; give us a bite-sized taste of film theorist André Bazin’s ideas; and present and discuss a couple of film clips – one old, one new, both titles you will have heard of. With plenty of time for audience questions and discussion.
Including extracts from
Bicycle Thieves (Italy, 1948, dir.Vittorio de Sica)
Call Me by Your Name (Italy/Fra/Bra/USA, 2017, dir. Luca Guadagnino)
If you go online to find out where you can take film studies in Britain, you will find many institutions that offer the discipline – and many more in other countries. But it was not always thus. In Britain we believe the first such courses were offered at the University of Warwick in the 1970s, where the famous critic Robin Wood was a lecturer.
The emergence of cinema as a subject of academic study in Britain seems to have come shortly after Alfred Hitchcock began to be taken seriously as an artist. Until then he had been broadly regarded as little more than a rather good technical film-maker working in the entertainment industry. Wood was perhaps the leading protagonist of looking at and analysing the work of film-makers across the board, whether they made explicit claims to be artists or not.
Our guest tonight went to St Alfred’s School in Wantage, decided to follow the film studies path and went to the University of Kent, where he is now in his second year. He will tell us a bit about the film theory he’s required to grapple with, other aspects of his course and, on a more personal note, will run and discuss excerpts from two films, Vittoria de Sica’s 1948 neo-realist classic Bicycle Thieves and Call Me by Your Name, directed in 2017 by Luca Guadagnino from a screenplay by James Ivory.
You are especially welcome at this evening’s special event if you are thinking of applying to take film studies.
Don’t hesitate to ask Adam questions!
- Adam brought a wide scope and depth to his academic knowledge of film. While there was much to absorb in one evening, he gave an interesting insight into the life of a modern film student
- An excellent and informative evening’s presentation – this is exactly the sort of thing film societies should be doing!
- A good account of what being a film student meant to Adam. He presented cogent examples of social realism (but there was much I couldn’t hear)
- Informative, educational evening – extremely well presented by Adam
- A valiant effort