12 Courses

The Film Experience

Platform: MIT OpenCourseWare

Institution: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Started: 05/10/2013

Finished: 14/04/2020

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The Language of Hollywood: Storytelling, Sound and Colour

Platform: Coursera

Institution: Wesleyan University

Started: 02/02/2015

Finished: 11/03/2015

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Scandinavian Film and Television

Platform: Coursera

Institution: University of Copenhagen

Started: 02/02/2015

Finished: 09/03/2015

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Explore Animation

Platform: FutureLearn

Institution: National Film and Television School

Started: 09/09/2016

Finished: 16/09/2016

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Philosophy of Film

Platform: MIT OpenCourseWare

Institution: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Started: 11/09/2017

Finished: 21/09/2017

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TCM Presents Into the Darkness: Investigating Film Noir

Platform: Canvas Network

Institution: Ball State University

Started: 05/06/2015

Finished: 03/08/2015

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TCM Presents Painfully Funny: Exploring Slapstick in the Movies

Platform: Canvas Network

Institution: Ball State University

Started: 02/03/2016

Finished: 16/04/2016

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TCM Presents The Master of Suspense: 50 Years of Hitchcock

Platform: Coursera

Institution: University of Colorado

Started: 26/06/2017

Finished: 04/08/2017

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TCM Presents Mad About Musicals

Platform: Canvas Network

Institution: Ball State University

Started: 07/06/2018

Finished: 30/06/2018

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Film, Images & Historical Interpretation in the 20th Century: The Camera Never Lies

Platform: Coursera

Institution: University of London

Started: 26/06/2015

Finished: 22/06/2016

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The Living Picture Craze: An Introduction to Victorian Film

Platform: Coursera

Institution: The British Film Institute

Started: 20/05/2020

Finished: 10/06/2020

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The History of Film and Video Editing

Platform: LinkedIn

Institution: LinkedIn Learning

Started: 10/11/2017

Finished: 12/11/2017

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2 Books

The Big Screen: The Story of the Movies and What They Did to Us

Author: David Thomson

Publisher: Penguin

Published: 2013 (first published October 1st 2012)

Started: 13/12/2014

Finished: 20/04/2015

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Keystone: The Life And Clowns Of Mack Sennett

Author: Simon Louvish

Publisher: Faber & Faber

Published: 2005 (first published 2003)

Started: 28/04/2014

Finished: 23/04/2014

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Theatrical performance of movie is a sentimental stronghold, and we know it will pass away. If you look at the remaining buildings where movies still play, and at their forlorn attempt to be glamorous while asking twelve dollars or more for a ticket, it is a wonder how long the natural transmission of new movies to our television set or by the internet has been delayed.
Some kids play video games, in intense groups, for longer than it would take to project Syberberg’s Hitler: A Film from Germany (442 minutes), or they revel over one-minute shots on YouTube. The technology has come to the aid of a culture that wearied of narrative and moral suspense a long time ago. 
If you add up the broken pieces a young person sees in a day, the chaos is like the earliest years of movie, when a viewer saw so many things we would call shorts, or clips, or bites. They were not whole movies, but the debris from an explosion in culture, were reality seemed to be scattered everywhere we looked.

David Thomson, The Big Screen: The Story of the Movies and What They Did To Us, 2013:510-11 

As with its sibling Media Studies field, Film Studies is a discipline that is very set in its ways. It struggles to grapple with new technologies and the new ways of being they create for the spectator and spectacle. I, however, have adopted the Media Studies 2.0 approach and now study film from a constructive, experimental and open-source perspective.

Film has always been a major fascination for me, it’s why I studied a BA (Hons) in Film and Screen Studies and this module picks up where my undergraduate studies left off.

A major influence of my progressive approach towards studying film in this module was David Thomson’s book, The Big Screen: The Story of the Movies and What They Did to Us. Like myself, Thomson has a burning belief that the discipline is in desperate need of reform and that it should never have been broken off from Media Studies.

Granted, I am still studying Media Studies and Film Studies as separate modules in my MTA Portfolio, but I view them more so as being a combined immersion under my larger Multimedia Studies and Creative Technologies concentration.

I think this is the way forward, I think these two fields can only be successfully and relevantly studied when they are combined back together under a much larger, constructive, experimental and opensource Multimedia Studies discipline.

When you are talking about film and our relationship to it, you are talking about a larger media landscape, one that our increasingly interconnected world is making increasingly obvious… but also increasingly confusing.

The classical disciplinary obsession of performing a textual analysis of a film text in isolation is a good place to start in understanding our relationship with film spectacles, but it will only get you so far.   

As I discovered towards the end of my Bachelor’s degree when I was doing practical filmmaking alongside my theoretical studies, you have to get your hands dirty, immerse yourself in emerging technologies and experiment with the medium, if you really want to understand what film is, how it functions and how we relate to it.  

Even with this module and my larger multimedia studies, I continued to experiment. I played around with an unfinished mocumentary that developed out of The Miracle of Crowdfunding project (was one of the progenitors for my MTA Portfolio).

I also did a 365 project in 2015 where I filmed and an assembled a short clip each day that I envisioned adding up to an overall film narrative of my year, I never edited the whole thing together, but each clip can still be viewed in isolation.

There were also twelve short cameo documentary films I made that focused on minute happenings in my life, my personal favourite was the one about my self-made standing desk. 

My only regret is that I could not devote more time to experimenting with film in my MTA Portfolio, but this module is far from being my final word on the subject.