3rd Edition

A Level Film Studies The Essential Introduction

By Sarah Casey Benyahia, John White Copyright 2020
    504 Pages 114 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    504 Pages 114 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This essential book covers the key areas for A Level Film Studies students, building confidence through a careful, step-by-step approach.

    The first part of the book establishes a basic understanding of the grounding of film analysis in the various elements of film construction, mise en scène, cinematography, editing, sound and performance, developing the knowledge students have of movies whilst challenging them to consider new films and ideas. Key theoretical approaches around narrative, genre, representation, spectatorship and authorship are introduced in Part II, before we consider specific national cinemas from around the world in parts III and IV. In Part V, the book assesses a range of slightly different film experiences, looking at silent cinema, experimental films and documentaries; before, finally, Part VI shifts to evaluating creative approaches to students’ own filmmaking.

    Specifically designed to be user-friendly, the book has an easy-to-follow design, includes more than 60 colour images and is packed with features such as:

    • case studies on a range of films and filmmakers;
    • activities on such films as Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (Murnau, 1927, USA), Vertigo (Hitchcock, 1958, USA), Do the Right Thing (Lee, 1989, USA), We Need to Talk About Kevin (Ramsay, 2011, UK) and Stories We Tell (Polley, 2012, Canada);
    • definitions of key terms; and 
    • suggestions for further reading and website resources.

    Matched to the current exam specification, A Level Film Studies: The Essential Introduction covers everything students need to study as part of the course. The book is supported by a companion website at www.alevelfilmstudies.co.uk, offering further advice and activities.

    Introduction: This is Film Studies

    Part I: Film Form and Analysis

    Chapter 1: Mise en scène

    Chapter 2: Cinematography

    Chapter 3: Editing

    Chapter 4: Sound

    Chapter 5: Performance

    Part II: Theoretical Approaches and Critical Debates

    Chapter 6: Narrative and Genre

    Chapter 7: Representation and Ideology  

    Chapter 8: Spectatorship and Audience Studies  

    Chapter 9: Authorship

    Chapter 10: Historical, Social, and Cultural Contexts

    Part III: Hollywood and US Cinema

    Chapter 11: Classic Hollywood, 1930-1960

    Chapter 12: New Hollywood, 1961-1990

    Chapter 13: Contemporary American Cinema

    Part IV: National Cinemas, Global Cinema, and Arthouse Film

    Chapter 14: Contemporary British Cinema

    Chapter 15: European Film

    Chapter 16: Global Film

    Part V: Further Varieties of Film Experience

    Chapter 17: Silent Cinema

    Chapter 18: Experimental Film

    Chapter 19: Documentary Film: Theory and Practice

    Part VI: Understanding Film through Creative Practice

    Chapter 20: Researching and Constructing a Short Film: Narrative Construction



    Sarah Casey Benyahia is Head of Film Studies at Colchester Sixth Form College. She is the author of Crime (2011), 'Between Place and Non-Place: Disrupting the Categorizations of the Past in Ida' in S. Allen and K. Møllegaard (eds), Narratives of Place in Literature and Film (2019), and co-author of Doing Film Studies (2012).

    John White is the author of Westerns (2011), European Art Cinema (2017), and The Contemporary Western: An American Genre Post-9/11 (2019). He is co-editor of The Routledge Encyclopedia of Films (2014).

    Freddie Gaffney is a lecturer, screenwriter, and filmmaker. He is co-author of AS Film Studies: The Essential Introduction, 2nd edn (2008) and On Screenwriting (2009).