Introduction to Film Analysis

Victoria University of Wellington

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Introduction to Film Analysis

  • Host University

    Victoria University of Wellington

  • Location

    Wellington, New Zealand

  • Area of Study

    Film Studies

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    This course examines how cinema creates meaning through formal elements such as narrative, mise-en-scene, cinematography, sound and editing. It introduces students to key concepts and terms in Film Studies. It develops their textual analysis skills and explores different practices of interpretation.

    Part 1 of the course (weeks 1-2) will provide a frame of reference to the study of cinema and an introduction to the course. Part 2 (weeks 3-7) will consider the different formal elements which constitute the specificity of cinematic form. Part 3 (weeks 8-12) will look at broader cultural and formal matters such as genre, authorship and reception as well as different forms of cinematic expressions.

    The aim of this course is to introduce you to the textual analysis of films, and to some of the critical approaches employed in Film Studies.
    Students who pass this course should be able to:
    1. perform close textual analysis of films, including the use of relevant terminology in a knowledgeable and critical manner
    2. demonstrate knowledge of Film Studies approaches to concepts and categories such as narration, documentary, genre, and authorship
    3. analyse some of the social and cultural meanings of film
    4. display enhanced critical, analytical and argumentative skills
    5. communicate their ideas and arguments about cinema effectively in a critical, creative and scholarly manner.

    1 Short Essay (800-1000 words) 15%
    2 Creative and critical project (see details below) 30%
    3 Textual analysis essay (1500-1800 words) 35%
    4 Online test (2 hours) 20%

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.