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2010/1 Module Catalogue
 Module Code: CMC3016 Module Title: WESTERN EUROPEAN CINEMA
Module Provider: Dance,Film & Theatre Short Name: LIM318
Level: HE3 Module Co-ordinator: HUGHES HA Dr (Dnc Flm Thtr)
Number of credits: 20 Number of ECTS credits: 10
Module Availability
Full Time
Assessment Pattern
Project of 3000 - 3,500 words (50%) [to be handed in week 20]
Exam, two essays in two hours (50%) [summer exam period]
Module Overview
This module is designed to frame a number of questions for discussion relating to the identity of European filmmaking as a collection of nationally oriented cinemas, in particular to consider whether a successful unified European film can ever be made.
Module Aims
European film cultures are renowned for the development of the art film, the political auteurist film as well as for their national and regional diversity. The objective of the module is to give Level 3 students an opportunity to widen their knowledge of European films and deepen their understanding of how cultural identity is expressed in this medium of the moving image.
Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this module students will have:
  • An understanding of how national cinemas have developed in postwar Europe
  • An understanding of the discussion on authorship in cinema in 1960 and 1970s Western European filmmaking
  • An understanding of how political cinema has been conceptualized in Western European filmmaking
  • An understanding of the economic and cultural debates around the merging of art and commercial cinema.
  • An understanding of contemporary European debates about film in the digital era.
  • An understanding of the debate about a pan-European cinema
 They will practice the skills of
  • film analysis
  • critical reading
  • critical writing
Module Content
This module will examine examples of art cinema from selected European film cultures, including Italy, France, Germany, Greece, Britain, Austria, Spain, Sweden and Denmark. It will also consider the role of writers on cinema such as Bazin, Peter Wollen, Laura Mulvey, Gilles Deleuze. The course is to consider the distinguishing features of national culture as well as the question of whether there can be a ‘European Cinema’. The films will cover the period from 1960 to the present, although we will begin by contrasting the Italian Neo-Realism of the immediate postwar years with Jacques Tati’s social comedy of the 1950s Mon Oncle (1958). The first half of the course concentrates on the European ‘new waves’, Rossellini in Italy, Jean-Luc Godard in France (Bande à part, 1964), Fassbinder in Germany (Fear Eats the Soul, 1973). The focus will be on realism, political engagement, humour and stylistic innovation. Focusing on examples of the work of Bergman (Cries and Whispers, 1972), Buñuel (Discrete Charm of the Bourgeoisie, 1972), and Derek Jarman (The Garden, 1990), the course will then examine the notion of the auteur, the writer director: to what extent can film, a collaborative medium, give expression to a personal voice? The course will also examine how the work of these auteurs is also often conceptualized and exported as the product of a national film culture. Finally we will turn to more recent films from the second half of the 1990s to the first decade of the new millenium (Angelopoulos, Ulysses’ Gaze 1997, Lars von Trier, Dogville 2003, Haneke, Caché 2005) and explore how auteurist filmmaking lives on in a more commercial climate. Here there will be a possibility of some choice on the part of students enrolled on the module.
Methods of Teaching/Learning
Attendance at all screenings and seminars is compulsory. You are expected to take notes during both. 

Part I    From post-war ruins to European cool noir
Week 2:           The Contexts of European Filmmaking: art, politics, 
                       subsidy, commerce.
Week 3:           Screening Germany Year Zero
Week 4:           Seminar: Italian Neo-Realism
Week 5:           Screening: Mon Oncle
Week 6:           Seminar: Europe in the 1950s: Economic upturn, genres 
                       and popular filmmaking.
Week 7:           Screening: Bande à part,
Week 8:           Reading Week
Part II 1970s filmmaking in Europe: art cinema versus political auteurism
Week 9:           Seminar: What was new about the New Wave?
Week 10:         Screening: Cries and Whispers
Week 11:         Seminar: Psychoanalysis and gender politics
Week 12:         Screening: Discrete Charm of the Bourgeoisie
Christmas Break
Week 20:         Seminar: Surrealism plus politics
Week 21:         Screening: Fear Eats the Soul
Week 22:         Seminar: Social politics and Brechtian filmmaking
Part III After the Cold War and Beyond the Millenium: European Fears and Revelations
Week 23:         Screening: The Garden
Week 24:         Seminar: Christianity, homosexuality and the Aids crisis
Week 25:         Screening: Ulysses’ Gaze
Week 26:         Seminar: Civil war and the weight of European history.
Week 27:         Screening Caché
Week 28:         Seminar: Contemporary surveillance techniques and guilt about Europe’s colonialist past.
Week 29:         Screening Downfall
Week 30:         Seminar: The Ever-Popular War          
Selected Texts/Journals
Ezra, Elizabeth (ed), European Cinema, (Oxford: Oxford University Pres, 2004)
Vincendeau, Ginette, Encylopedia of European Cinema, (London: BFI, 1995)  
Adorno, Theodor, Composing for Films (London: Continuum, 1994)
Aitkin, Ian, European Film Theory and Cinema: An Introduction (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2001)
Bellos, David, Jacques Tati: His Life and Art, (London: The Harvill Press, 2001)
Bondanella, Peter, Italian Cinema: From Neo Realism to the Present, (London: Continuum Academi, 2001)
Carriere, Jean Claude, An Unspeakable Betrayal: Selected Writings of Luis Bunuel, (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2002)
Elsaesser, Thomas, European Cinema: Face to Face with Hollywood, (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2003)
Elsaesser, Thomas, Fassbinder's Germany: History, Identity, Subject (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press,1996)
Elsaesser, Thomas, The Bfi Companion to German Cinema, (London: BFI Publishing, 1999)
 Everett, Wendy, European Identity in Cinema, (Bristol: Intellect Books, 2005)
Forbes, Jill, and Sarah Street, European Cinema: An Introduction, (Basingstoke: Palgrave, MacMillan, 2000)
Fowler, Catherine, The European Cinema Reader, (London and New York: Routledge, 2002)
Galt, Rosalind, The New European Cinema: Redrawing the Map, (New York: Columbia University Press, 2006)
Horton, Andrew, The Last Modernist: The Films of Theo Angelopoulos, (London: Flicks Books, 1997)
Holms, N, 100 Years of European Cinema: Entertainment or Ideology, (Manchester: Manchester U P, 2000)
Jackel, Ann, European Film Industries, (London: BFI Publishing, 2003)
Kalin, Jesse, The Films of Ingmar Bergman, (Cambridge: Cambridge U P, 2003)
Krohn, Bill, and Paul Duncan, Luis Bunuel (Cologne: Taschen, 2006)
Michelson, Annette, On Godard (Cambridge, Mass., Da Capo Press, 1988)
Murch, Walter, Fine Cuts: The Art of European Film Editing, (New York: Focal Press, 2005)
Sorlin, Pierre, European Cinemas: European Societies (London: Routledge, 1991)
Stevensen, Jack, Dogme Uncut, (Chicago: Santa Monica Press, 2004)
Vincendeau, Ginette, The Bfi Companion to French Cinema, (London: Continuum, 1996)
Williams, James, For Ever Godard:The Work of Jean Luc Godard (Emersen, New Jersey: Black Dog Press, 2003)
Last Updated
9th July 2008