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Belcourt - Nashville's Nonprofit Cinema

Online Anatomy of Cinema: How Movies Move Us

During this time of social distancing, we’re offering our popular seminar, Anatomy of Cinema: How Movies Move Us, online at no cost. 

We’ll offer four sessions, from 7-8pm, on successive Tuesdays, Mar 24 through Apr 14. Sessions will cover Mise-en-scène, Cinematography, Editing, and Acting in Cinema. Vanderbilt faculty members in cinema and media arts will lead interactive discussions on film technique and the aesthetic experience of the moving image.


*To get the info you’ll need to join a seminar session, RSVP at the link below. On the day of the session, you’ll receive an email with the details. 

If you’d like to support the Belcourt during this unprecedented time, please click here.

Session 1: Mise-en-scène
Tue, Mar 24, 7-8pm

Literally translated as “placement in the scene,” mise-en-scène is an umbrella term for location, set design, lighting, and the arrangement of people and things to be filmed. What difference does it make to shoot in a dark studio—the model of classical Hollywood cinema—versus the location shooting of Italian neo-realism or the Berlin School? What are the aesthetic and ethical dimensions of controlling mise-en-scène as opposed to allowing contingency to determine the content of the shot? Led by Lutz Koepnick


Session 2: Cinematography
Tue, Mar 31, 7-8pm

Sometimes described as writing with light and movement, cinematography entails the choice of film stock, lenses, framing, shot duration, and camera movement, all of which determine how we see the things, people and environments placed before the camera. Led by Iggy Cortez


Session 3: Editing
Tue, Apr 7, 7-8pm

Editing is the joining of shots, ranging from the “invisible style” of Hollywood cinema to the more experimental techniques of Soviet Montage and the French New Wave. Because editing enables filmmakers to create completely imaginary geographies and temporalities, it is often considered to be the most cinematic of all techniques. Through it, cinema creates its own world. We consider this manipulation and creation. Led by Andrea Mirabile


Session 4: Acting in Cinema
Tue, Apr 14, 7-8pm

What difference does it make that film actors play to a camera instead of a live audience, or that what we perceive as a single performance is typically many performances edited together? How do human actors compete with animals, things, and cinema’s wider environments in film as opposed to theater? This seminar takes stock of the film actor as a force of narrative, a master of technique, and as an entity uniquely produced by film style. Led by Claire Sisco King


About the speakers:
Iggy Cortez is the Mellon Assistant Professor of Cinema and Media Arts at Vanderbilt University. His research and teaching interests include world cinema, queer aesthetics, the history of the senses, and questions of screen performance and embodiment. He is currently working on a book on nighttime across recent world cinema, and his work has appeared or is forthcoming in the Journal of Cinema and Media Studies, ASAP/J, and Art Asia Pacific.

Claire Sisco King is associate professor of communication studies and cinema and media arts at Vanderbilt University and chair of the communication studies department. She also teaches in Vanderbilt’s comparative media analysis and practice program. Her areas of teaching and research specialization include visual studies, popular film and media cultures, and gender and sexuality. She’s the author of Washed in Blood: Male Sacrifice, Trauma, and the Cinema. She is currently finishing a new book on celebrity culture and ephemeral media. 

Lutz Koepnick is the Gertrude Conaway Vanderbilt Professor of German, Cinema and Media Arts at Vanderbilt University, where he also chairs the department of German, Russian and East European studies and serves as the directors of the joint-Ph.D. program in comparative media analysis and practice. He has published widely on film, media theory, visual culture, and new media aesthetic. His most recent books are The Long Take: Art Cinema and the Wondrous, Michael Bay: World Cinema in the Age of Populism, and Fitzcarraldo.

Andrea Mirabile is associate professor of Italian and Cinema and Media Arts at Vanderbilt University. He teaches courses on Italian cinema and French cinema, with a focus on the avant-gardes, neorealism, and the New Wave. Mirabile is interested in the multifaceted relationships between the verbal and the visual, at the intersections between literature, art history, and film theory. His most recent books include Ezra Pound e l'arte italiana/Ezra Pound and Italian Art and Raccontare immagini/Narrating Images. Currently, he is working on the multimedia creations of Alberto Burri.

For more information about faculty members, please visit the Vanderbilt Program in Cinema and Media Arts website.

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