Exploring horror cinema
Time: 19:45 - 21:30
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
Course Code: HF205
Duration: 5 sessions (over 5 weeks)
Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.
What is the course about?
This online film studies course explores a range of ways of approaching and thinking about the horror film and will consider key themes, concepts and critical accounts of the genre as a means through which to do so. We will also look at the ways in which horror cinema has been understood as a 'problem' genre and the censorship issues arising from this, but, somewhat paradoxically, how it has always found an audience, often dedicated to the genre, and its current status as a major box office attraction. The course will also explore a range of production contexts, past and present, including both classical and post-classical Hollywood, British and European cinema, and East Asian cinema, and the various forms of the genre that have emerged within each of these.
Films featured on the course will include the following:
The Cabinet of Dr Caligari (1919), Nosferatu, a Symphony of Horror (1922), The Phantom of the Opera (1925), Dracula (1931), Frankenstein (1931), Vampyr (1932), The Bride of Frankenstein (1935), Night of the Demon (1957)The Curse of Frankenstein (1957), Dracula (1958), The Mummy (1959), Eyes Without a Face (1960), Black Sunday (1960), Night of the Living Dead (1968), Rosemary's Baby (1968), The Exorcist (1973), The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974), Suspiria (1977), Halloween (1978), The Evil Dead (1981), Ring (1998), The Blair Witch Project (1999), Scream (1999), Dark Water (2002), The Grudge (2002), [REC] (2007), Let the Right One In (2008), Insidious (2010), The Conjuring (2013)
Prior viewing and reading is not required. The tutor will provide notes for each session and suggest further reading and viewing.
This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
• The horror film and the concept of genre
• Themes and concepts in horror cinema (e.g., gender and 'the return of the repressed')
• Critical accounts of horror cinema - but also popular responses, and the concept of horror audiences
• The history and development of the horror film
• Key films and filmmakers in horror cinema
• Film style and the horror film
• Production contexts(e.g., the US, Britain, Europe and East Asia)
• 'Remakes' and series/franchise horror cinema.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
• Understand the horror film in terms of genre
• Evaluate a range of themes and concepts in horror cinema
• Evaluate a range of critical accounts of horror cinema, and a range of popular responses and the concept of a horror audience
• Describe the history and development of the horror film
• Identify and evaluate key films and filmmakers
• Describe and evaluate film style and the horror film
• Evaluate a range of production contexts and their impact on the development of the horror film
• Evaluate a phenomenon of remakes and series/franchise horror cinema.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
The course is suitable for all levels and you do not require any particular skills - just an enthusiasm for film and discussing film. The course will provide an introduction to the subject but will also be useful for those wishing to build on existing knowledge in the subject area.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
Screenings of extracts from films, talks by the tutor, reading materials, small and large group discussions. It might also be a good idea to see what you can find out about the subject in advance of the class (see the films mentioned above) but this is not essential.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
You will require a pen and paper (or laptop/device) but the tutor will provide all other materials such as handouts. The tutor will show extracts from films and you do not have to obtain them.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Look for other film studies courses on our website at www.citylit.ac.uk/History, Culture & Writing/Film Studies.
Jon Wisbey teaches film at City Lit and Morley College. He was for many years a committee member and vice-chair of Chelmsford Film Club, screening contemporary and classic world cinema releases. He has an MA in Film Studies from the University of East Anglia. His teaching focuses on classical and post-classical Hollywood, European cinema, British cinema, film noir and horror cinema.
Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.