Introduction to French Cinema

Université Catholique de Lille

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Introduction to French Cinema

  • Host University

    Université Catholique de Lille

  • Location

    Lille, France

  • Area of Study

    Film Studies, French Culture, Radio - Television - Film

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

    Hours & Credits

  • Contact Hours

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    This course will provide students with an overview of French cinema and the art of cinema more
    generally. Cinema was born in France, and continues to occupy a central position within French
    culture. We will thus examine various ways of ‘reading’ a film while viewing representative works
    from different periods of French cinematic history, with a special emphasis on the region of
    northern France.

    Course sessions will include:
    - introduction to cinema/film studies
    - cinema history
    - French cinema
    - French culture and history
    - critical approaches to film and film analysis
    - literary adaptation
    - analysis of assorted film clips and still photographs
    - La Grande Illusion (Renoir, 1938: Grand Illusion): the first prison escape film, regularly named
    as one of the greatest films ever made 
    - La Nuit Américaine (Truffaut, 1973: Day for Night): the best film ever made about filmmaking
    - Germinal (Berri, 1993): a faithful and affecting adaptation of Zola’s 1885 masterpiece about a
    mining community in northern France
    - Un long dimanche de fiançailles (Jeunet, 2004: A Very Long Engagement): a highly inventive
    adaptation (by the director of Amélie) of a best-selling novel that combines joyous romance
    and the grave consequences of trench warfare
    - Bienvenue chez les Ch’tis (Boon, 2008: Welcome to the Sticks): one of France’s most popular
    films, and an essential introduction to the region
    - Wrap-up and evaluation

    Learning Outcomes:
    By the end of the course, the students should be able to:
    - understand how to read and analyse a film
    - evaluate film as a social and cultural document
    - outline the basic history of cinema in France
    - recognize and use some of the essential terminology of film-making and cinema studies 

    Lecture, film-viewing, group work, discussion, presentations, case-studies.

    All course materials will be supplied in class. Reference may be made to the following online
    - A Basic Glossary of Film Terms (to be made available to registered students)
    - : a wide variety of useful links
    - : useful background
    - : to supplement your French

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) credits are converted to semester credits/quarter units differently among U.S. universities. Students should confirm the conversion scale used at their home university when determining credit transfer.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations


This site uses cookies to store information on your computer. Some are essential to make our site work; others help us improve the user experience. By using the site, you consent to the placement of these cookies.

Read our Privacy Policy to learn more.