Film Analysis: Theories and Methods (846P4)

30 credits, Level 7 (Masters)

Autumn teaching

Film studies is a pluralist field of enquiry that brings together discourses, theories and approaches from multiple disciplines.

This module will explore diverse intellectual histories, critical approaches and theoretical debates that have helped to shape film studies as a scholarly discipline across the past five decades. Scrutinising theoretical approaches and methodologies, the module will invite you to explore and critique the discipline's intellectual history and its conceptualisations of film as:

  • an art form
  • a medium
  • an ideological apparatus or signifying practice
  • an institution of cultural representation.

We will also consider significant intersections between films and broader theoretical discourses. Topics may include:

  • theories of authorship and genre
  • issues of ideology
  • psychoanalytic and feminist approaches
  • reception studies
  • strategies of cultural representation (race and ethnicity, sexuality)
  • historiography.


60%: Lecture (Film)
40%: Seminar


100%: Coursework (Essay)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 300 hours of work. This breaks down into about 55 hours of contact time and about 245 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2023/24. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to COVID-19, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let our applicants know of material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.