T H E F I L M S T U D I E S W E B S I T E O F B E N T O N P A R K S C H O O L
Content Section A:
This section requires a specific engagement with a World Cinema topic, including contextual knowledge.
There are prescribed topics but no prescribed films and questions will be broadly
International Film Styles Topics for examination are:
German and/or Soviet Cinema of the 1920s
This topic focuses on the characteristics of a film style which may have originated
in a particular national cinema as a ' movement ' and which subsequently has had
It is possible to focus on the initial moment, such as German Expressionism or Soviet
Montage in the 1920s or Italian Neo -
Much of the French New Wave seems to have been built upon filtering American pulp
culture through the lens of French and European intellectualism (or pseudo-
It all begins here in Godard's directorial debut, and many claim that all modern filmmaking begins with this movie, meaning you can look at Breathless in one of two ways: you can look at it as a film, or you can look at it as a revolution. Well, yeah, you can look at it any other number of ways, or combine those two, but they are the aspects of the film with which I'll be poking around. As a revolution, there's not much denying Breathless' impact on filmmaking. Everything changed the day people saw Breathless. Technique changed, and more importantly perhaps, content changed. It is the movie that opened the way for more radical political films. It pioneered a style of filmmaking, writing, and acting and inspired countless stylistic offshoots that took the manifesto and ran with it in wildly diverse directions.
It challenged pretty much everything anyone thought they knew about how a film could be executed. In this sense, it doesn't matter how the pieces are put together in Breathless itself; it only matters what Breathless did to other films.
As is befitting for such an anti-
Handheld shots were used because they could not afford to lie down tracks for proper dolly shots.
The jump edits which came to define the film were a product of the film being overlong by half an hour.
Rather than cutting whole scenes, Godard decided to trim bits and pieces from within each scene.
The New Wave is about a new relationship between fiction and reality.
Cahiers du Cinema: important journal edited by Andre Bazin
"LEFT BANK" filmmakers
(Resnais, Varda, Marker)
Characteristics of the New Wave:
1) lightweight handheld cameras,
2) portable synchronous sound,
4) zoom lenses
new technologies allowed location shooting with small crews, improvisation during shooting, increased camera movement, natural light and sound
2) camera and editing techniques such as iris shots, freeze frames, wipes, fast and slow motion
1) disrupts sense of time and space with flashbacks, jump cuts, asides
2) rejection of continuity editing of Classical Hollywood style in favour of lengthy
takes, beginning scenes with close-
French critic Michel Mane lists a series of key factors that dictated the aesthetics of New Wave films
1 the auteur-
2 a strictly broken-
3 natural decor and locations are privileged over studio sets,
4 a minimal crew of a few people is used,
5 'direct sound' recorded at the moment of shooting is preferred to post-
6 traditional lighting set-
8 if professional actors are chosen, they tend to be 'new faces' who are directed in a loose and free fashion
While this is an excellent slide sequence it, perhaps goes into more detail than will be required by the examiners.
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