Film studies

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Film Studies Courses
Study online & in London

Enjoy a fresh look at big screen classics, ground-breaking titles and cult favourites featuring a cast of iconic names, former stars and the men and women who called the shots.

Check out our blog post on our new Cultureplex Ciné-Club, where once a week, for 12 weeks (and throughout the academic year in terms 2 and 3), we will watch and discuss film.

Courses available both in-person and online

We offer a range of courses allowing you to choose between online and in-person learning. All our courses are live, interactive, and taught by expert tutors. No matter how you prefer to learn, you’ll receive the same great City Lit experience. See our guide to online learning for more information about accessing our live online courses.

Study in-person, or online from the comfort of home, with classes that allow you to participate in discussions with fellow adult students and share your passion for Film as part of a learning community. We offer daytime, evening and weekend courses, both short and long. Our tutors are experts in their fields and experienced educators. Tutors share their knowledge and passion for Film through presentations, screenings, interactive discussion, analysis, and other activities.

Many students return to take more courses, telling us they enjoy being part of our City Lit literary community. Our popular courses often sell out quickly, so we invite you to browse and book your place now.

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  1. Film Studies Taster
    Evening
    Course start date:  Wed 21 Sep 2022 (and 4 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Paul Sutton
    Learn how to evaluate and discuss films while enjoying a working example of a City Lit film studies class.



    We will view clips from a wide variety of films, exploring themes and technique in British cinema and modern American cinema. There will be a chance to review term one film courses at City Lit (September - December 2022).
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
  2. Christmas at the cinema: holiday favourites
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 10 Dec 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  John Wischmeyer
    A Christmas cracker filled with seasonal films, a carefully-curated cornucopia celebrating the genre and style of the Christmas movie with clips of classics and hidden gems: Scrooge as a film noir, the old Covent Garden open Every Day Except Christmas; and a grown man dressed as an Elf (Jon Favreau 2003). Full of delights, discussions and a quiz or two.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £15.00 Concession £12.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  3. Italian Cinema: Neorealism
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 22 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  John Wischmeyer
    Neorealism was just a brief moment in cinema history, but its impact was enormous, not only on Italian film but also on the French New Wave and ultimately on films all over the world—but not only on films. It was a postwar film movement that helped reconstruct a broken society. The term 'neorealism' was first applied to Visconti’s Ossessione (1943) but the style came to fruition in the mid-to-late forties in such films as Roberto Rossellini’s Rome Open City (1945), Shoeshine (1946), Paisan (1946) and Bicycle Thieves (1948 Vittorio De Sica).
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  4. Powerful women of the cinema
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 28 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Graham Rinaldi
    How is film stardom created? Who creates it and what for? These are the underlying questions behind reading the images of film stars – especially stars who happen to be female. This course examines the working lives of four women who exemplified the notion of screen stardom and acting.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  5. From families and fantasy to Independents and franchises: Hollywood cinema since 1980
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 29 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Jon Wisbey
    Explore Hollywood cinema since 1980, an era marked by the industry's consolidation of its strength and a focus on sequels, series and franchise films featuring adventure, fantasy and comedy themes aimed at younger audiences and families. We will also consider new technologies and exhibition platforms, and the role of the independent sector in catering for both specialist and wider audiences.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  6. The Exorcist at 50
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 18 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Jon Wisbey
    A landmark film, The Exorcist brought a new level of terror to the big screen; nothing like it had been seen before in mainstream cinema - and nor has it since. This course offers a detailed analysis of the film and its key themes, its production, critical and popular reception, and its influence on the development of the demonic possession film, and horror cinema and popular culture in general.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  7. Television and Streaming's Brave New World: What's on the Box Set?
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 19 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  John Wischmeyer
    Did you binge in lockdown but are now more selective? Where and how do you watch your preferred TV series or movies? With current inflation price rises will you let your subscription lapse? The Culture Secretary wants Channel 4 to be more like Netflix, but that model appears to be faltering and it covers no news. We may lose BBC 4 and Radio 4 Extra, but the new generation of viewers don’t use BBC or even television, so perhaps it’s not a problem for them. Let’s come together to discuss the contemporary small screen, our viewing preferences and our favourite TV series and films to see where we stand on the matter.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £59.00 Concession £38.00
  8. A Star is Born: The birth of Hollywood stardom
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 4 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ann-Marie Fleming
    Once cinema began to develop, Hollywood began to promote stardom. Starting with Florence Lawrence, the industry began to capitalise on star personalities and encourage fandom. This course will examine how the Hollywood star system began and evolved. The course will begin by examining the ‘picture personality’ in 1912 through to the collapse of the traditional star system in the 1960s.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  9. An Introduction to American Film Criticism
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 11 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Mick McAloon
    Why do we read film critics? What makes a great film critic? Is film criticism an art form in itself?



    This online film studies course explores the work of two of America’s greatest film critics - Manny Farber and Pauline Kael – and provides an overview of American film criticism, its history and rich literary tradition, and shows how film critics wrote about the medium of cinema as it evolved in the 20th century.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  10. Don't Look Now and The Wicker Man at 50
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 12 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Jon Wisbey
    Explore two landmark British horror films, originally released together as a double bill, one a gothic psychological work, the other a key example of British 'folk horror' cinema. Looking at a range of key scenes from each of the films, we will assess their critical reception and status in British horror cinema, while considering their enduring popularity with both critics and audiences alike.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  11. An Introduction to Psychoanalysis and Film
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 25 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Mary Wild
    A guide to contemporary films directed by women, examined through a psychoanalytic lens. An opportunity to discuss the ways in which cinema can continue to evolve to more authentically depict female desire, fears and subjectivity.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  12. The other side of Hollywood: 'B' movies and exploitation cinema
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 26 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Jon Wisbey
    Emerging in the 1930s as a means of extending the theatrical experience, the 'B' movie became an industry staple, only disappearing along with the studio era in the 1950s and the rise of the 'exploitation' film during a period of readjustment. Explore each of these areas of production, their roles as facets of Hollywood's output, and a representative selection of films, filmmakers and genres.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £55.00 Concession £45.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  13. Masters of cinema: Agnes Varda
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 1 Apr 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Paul Sutton
    2019 was marked by the death of a true mistress of world cinema, Agne`s Varda. We will introduce you to her oeuvre, from La pointe courte (1955) to her final work, Varda par Agnes (2019), exploring her status as a ‘feminist’ icon. The digital was central to her later career, making her, perhaps, a multi-media artist rather than just a film director.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  14. Strange tales and dark dreams: Fantasy, horror and surrealism in European cinema
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 29 Apr 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Jon Wisbey
    Explore a selection of films from the early days of European cinema, and later, that draw on a range of key genre traditions, but which have also acquired significant critical reputations, with their memorable visual qualities and unsettling narratives lending them an enduring place in both cinema and popular culture. Strange tales and dark dreams to fascinate, horrify and astound you.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  15. Masters of Cinema: Clint Eastwood - Directing the West
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 7 May 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Graham Rinaldi
    “The Western brought me a certain notoriety” – Clint Eastwood the last of the Western Film Directors. This course will look at Eastwood’s body of work set in the American Wild West from High Plains Drifter to Cry Macho. We will explore his themes, storytelling, influences and techniques in creating a truly American art form.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00

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