Starting a new post series is always a shaky venture for me; if it weren’t mathematically impossible, I’d say I probably abandon more series than I start. Yet here I go again. I’ve been wanting to do something like an introduction to cinema for non-film experts for a while now. In other words, if I were teaching an Intro to Film course to college freshmen and sophomores, these would be some of the things I’d talk about. People who know a lot about film may find some of the things I talk about too basic, which is why I decided to do this series here rather than Row Three – my audience here is more varied.
The only thing keeping it different from an intro college course is that I’m not planning on doing things in order. That is, I may write about the invention of film in one post, then about the French New Wave in the next, then discuss what a producer does in the third. It’s likely a bunch of the entries will be either historical or theoretical (i.e., explaining the auteur theory or genre theory in film criticism), simply because that’s what I find the most interesting, but I will also try to include some practical stuff about production as well, since I know people tend to have questions about that side of film. But I am not a filmmaker and don’t have extensive technical knowledge, so even those will probably tend to take a historical tack. Some posts may be on an era or national cinema, others may be just about a single film. There’s going to be a lot of leeway in what’s covered and how it’s covered in this series, which I’m hoping will help keep it both interesting to me to write and to you to read.
And in fact, I would like for you to tell me what you have questions about – what areas of filmmaking, film history, film criticism, etc. you’d like to know more about. What film movements have you heard of but aren’t as familiar with as you’d like to be? What aspects of filmmaking would you be interested to learn about? I expect and intend to be doing a bunch of research for this series, and actually, that’s part of the impetus for it – to give myself a solid reason and drive to get back into reading about and learning about film in a dedicated manner myself. But I can do that in a more efficient and directed way if I have some ideas that I know people might be interested in. Otherwise, I’ll probably just talk about the New Wave and film noir a whole lot. :)
So please, go ahead and comment with some things you’d like to see in this space in the future.