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Film Festivals


  • Credit value: 30 credits at Level 7
  • Convenor: Dorota Ostrowska
  • Assessment: a 3000-word essay (50%) and a 2000-word Berlinale field trip report (50%)

Module description

This module explores the role of film festivals in relation to contemporary film culture and aims to answer the question 'why do film festivals matter today and historically?' We will employ a variety of perspectives through which this relationship will be considered: programming; audiences; event-based cultural experience; industry and funding; the status of the films which make up the programming of the festival. We will reflect on how the relationship between contemporary film and film festival cultures is impacted by changes in technology; the site/location/space of the festival; politics, identity politics and geopolitics. We will look at different types of film festivals: city-based, international, identity, national, activist, archival and genre.

The module is a mixture of practical exercises, oral presentations and written assignments.

The Berlinale field trip (February 2021) offers an invaluable insight into the workings of a major international film festival and global film industry. You will need to attend a minimum of seven full days. There is an additional cost associated with the field trip.

You will also be entitled to a free student pass for the BFI London Film Festival (October 2020).