FILMICON: The New Journal That Will Launch a Thousand (Plus) Greek Film Studies


New Todd Haynes’ Masterclass

Todd Haynes‘ masterclass given on November 12, 2011, on the occasion of a retrospective of his films at the XIIth Queer Film Festival MEZIPATRA in Prague. Coproduced by MEZIPATRA, MIDPOINT and FAMU. Todd Haynes speaks about all his films with the Variety critic Boyd Van Hoeij.

Film Studies For Free heard about the above, enjoyable and hugely insightful video thanks to San Francisco based film critic Michael Guillén.

FSFF has a longstanding soft spot for Haynes, a great filmmaker whose work has a compelling relationship with film theory, as well as with Film Studies as a discipline, as the above video indicates time and again.

Interested readers can find earlier FSFF entries on Haynes (with links to lots of online studies of his works) here and here, and also on queer film theory here.

The Future of Cinema: Discussion with David Bordwell, Simon Field, Andréa Picard and Alan Franey

A very quick post at Film Studies For Free today to bring you a fascinating futurological film and film studies resource: the video of a very well informed panel discussion on where cinema is going.

It features, among others, film scholar extraordinaire David Bordwell, who, as a phenomenal researcher of (practically) the entirety of cinema’s past and present, is definitely one of the best qualified people in the world to comment on cinema’s future.

The video is a must see if you’re interested in the future of film technologies of production and especially of distribution and exhibition. It is part of the 2011 Vancouver International Film Festival collection at Vimeo.

Future of Cinema – Looking Forward After 30 Years
Event description:

The first few chapter headings in a film we did not program at this year’s [Vancouver International Film Festival] VIFF are: “Technology Is Great”, “The Industry Is Dead”, “Artists Have the Power”, and “The Craft Is Gone.” To which celluloid-loving film festival organizers might ask: Is it? Do they? Where on earth are we headed? And why?

VIFF has come a long way in its 30 years and never has the future of cinema–and VIFF‘s future–been more uncertain. Will it be bright and splendid and fair or will it move so quickly that a great deal of what is valuable will be lost before we know it? There are now dramatically more “film festivals” and “films” being made than ever, yet some fear that the industry may be dead. Filmmakers are acutely worried for funding, yet need to operate on a growing number of fronts. Given that the numbers of hours in a day and the numbers of days in a life remain fixed, what limits should we council for our own appetites? Why might we miss the Hollywood Theatre and Videomatica? Given that cultural agencies seemingly have shrinking resources but more new media and film festival applicants every year, will the centres hold or is babble ascendant? Will VIFF‘s function as an annual international universalist festival be superseded by myriad niche events?

Technology is indeed great in that it has put the means of creative motion picture production in almost everyone’s hands, but will the best artists be the ones to be recognized? The entrepreneurial spirit tends to favour change in hopes that it may profit from it, but will artists have the power? When entrepreneurs benefit, will consumers benefit? Will cultural institutions that have taken years to build remain viable? Will cinema, metrics of quality and craftsmanship and, ultimately, quality of life be improved or even be sustainable? What do you personally care about for the future of cinema to offer? What should VIFF 2020 aim to be?

Here to wrestle with these sorts of questions—and yours—will be a distinguished group of panellists including: David Bordwell, film critic, academic and author of numerous books on cinema; Simon Field, film producer and former Director, International Film Festival Rotterdam; Andréa Picard, film critic and programmer, formerly of the Toronto International Film Festival and the Cinémathèque Ontario; Tom Charity, film critic and Vancity Theatre program coordinator; and Alan Franey, director, Vancouver International Film Festival.

Latest five volumes of REFRACTORY: A Journal of Entertainment Media

Frame grab from Spider (David Cronenberg, 2002). Read Samatha Lindop’s 2011 article on this film here. For another interesting, psychiatrically-informed account of Cronenberg’s film, see here

Thanks to Adrian Martin (whose video version of his Ritwik Ghatak talk is now online, by the way), Film Studies For Free heard about the latest issue of the online Australian journal Refractory: A Journal of Entertainment Media. And thanks to that, FSFF realised it hadn’t really mentioned an issue of Refractory since Volume 14, 2009 in its entry on “Split Screens”. So, below are direct links to all of the contents of this great journal since that issue. And FSFF promises not to be quite so pommily slow next time this journal publishes one of its characteristically excellent collections of film and media studies…

Refractory, Volume 19, 2011

  1. Blockbusters for the YouTube Generation: A new product of convergence culture – Kristy Hess and Lisa Waller
  2. ‘Out wiv the old ay plumma?’ The Uncanny Marginalized Wastelands of Memory and Matter in David Cronenberg’s Spider – Samantha Lindop
  3. A Moving Image Experience: Il Cinema Ritrovato, Bologna, June-July, 2010 – Wendy Haslem
  4. “A series of emotional remembrances”: Echoes of Bernard Herrmann -Daniel Golding
  5. Don Draper On The Couch: Mad Men and the Stranger to Paradise – Mark Nicholls

Refractory, Volume 18, 2011

  1. Editorial: Transitions in Popular Culture – Matthew Sini and Angie Knaggs  
  2. “Never my soul”: Adaptations, Re-makes and Re-imaginings of Yeşilçam Cinema – Can Yalcinkaya  
  3. Looking Past Seeing: Imaginative Space and Empathetic Engagement in The Treasure of the Sierra Madre and There Will Be Blood – Elliott Logan
  4. Struggling to find their place: Indigenous youth, identity, and storytelling in Beneath Clouds and Samson and Delilah – Samantha Fordham
  5. Transgeneric Tendencies in New Queer Cinema – Matthew Sini
  6. Before Priscilla: Male-to-Female Transgender in Australian Cinema until the 1990s – Joanna McIntyre
  7. From Night and Day to De-Lovely: Cinematic Representations of Cole Porter – Penny Spirou
  8. (Em)Placing Prison Break: Heterotopic Televisual Space and Place – Angie Knaggs
  9. “Think Smart”: multiple casting, critical engagement and the contemporary film spectator – Nicole Choolun

Refractory, Volume 17, 2010

  1. From Cult Texts to Authored Languages: Fan Discourse and the Performances of Authorship – Karolina Agata Kazimierczak
  2. The Pinball Problem – Daniel Reynolds
  3. The Invisible Medium: Comics Studies in Australia – Kevin Patrick
  4. Acculturation of the ‘Pure’ Economy: Sci Fi, IT and the National Lampoon – Rock Chugg
  5. Subversive Frames: Vermeer And Lucio Fulci’s SETTE NOTE IN NERO – Alexandra Heller-Nicholas
  6. Ringu/ The Ring: Tracing the Analog Spirit in a Digital Era – Michael Fisch
  7. Keaton and the Lion: A Critical Re-evaluation of The Cameraman, Free and Easy and Speak Easily – Anna Gardner
  8. Rosy-Fingered Dawn: The Natural Sublime in the work of Terrence Malick – Dimitrios Latsis

Refractory, Volume 16, 2009

  1. Editorial ‘All Your Base Are Belong to Us’: Videogames and Play in the Information Age : Tom Apperley and Justin Clemens
  2. A Critique of Play – Sean Cubitt
  3. ‘The code which governs war and play’: Computer games, sport and modern combat – Jeff Sparrow
  4. Being Played: Games Culture and Asian American Dis/identifications – Dean Chan
  5. “I’m OK”: How young people articulate ‘violence’ in videogames – Gareth Schott
  6. How to Do Things With Images – Darshana Jayemanne
  7. Myths of Neoconservatism and Privatization in World of Warcraft – Kyle Kontour
  8. Babelswarm -Justin Clemens, Christopher Dodds and Adam Nash

Refractory, Volume 15, 2009

Double Issue: General Issue and Television Issue, Editors: Angela Ndalianis and Lucian Chaffey

  1. Reality is in the performance’: Issues of Digital Technology, Simulation and Artificial Acting in S1mOne – Anna Notaro
  2. The Neo-baroque in Lucha Libre – Kat Austin
  3. Ryan Is Being Beaten: Incest, Fanfiction, and The OC – Jes Battis
  4. Mobile Content Market: an Exploratory Analysis of Problems and Drivers in the U.S. – Giuseppe Bonometti, Raffaello Balocco, Peter Chu, Shiv Prabhu, Rajit Gadh
  5. Televisual control: The resistance of the mockumentary – Wendy Davis
  6. The Classic Hollywood Town at the Dawn of Suburbia – Stephen Rowley
  7. Digital Intervention: Remixes, Mash Ups and Pixel Pirates – Amanda Trevisanut
  8. The Bill 1984 – 2009: Genre, Production, Redefinition – Margaret Rogers
  9. Guiding Stars – Carly Nugent

>New Issue of Screening the Past


Image from The Party (Blake Edwards, 1968). Read Charles Barr’s article on this film, reprinted in issue 30 of Screening the Past

Film Studies For Free rushes you news, via Adrian Martin, that not only has Screening the Past, that wonderful, A* rated, online journal of screen history, theory and criticism, posted its latest issue, but it has changed URL, and is in the process of upgrading its website.

All the new contents are listed below. FSFF hasn’t read everything yet, but is enjoying STP‘s tributes to Blake Edwards, as well as the Open Access reprint of Chris Berry’s wonderful essay China’s New “Women’s Cinema”.

First Release

Tribute to Blake Edwards


>Film Festival Studies Redux


Thai filmmaker Apichatpong Weerasethakul enjoys some festival fun as he receives the 2010 Palme D’Or for his film Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives at the Cannes Film Festival

Film Studies For Free has been catching up with some great resources lately. One set which should really not pass its readers by is In Media Res‘s recent collection of work on ‘Diversity of Film Festivals in East Asia‘ curated by Dina Iordanova and Ruby Cheung. All items are linked to directly below.

Here’s a little excerpt from Iordanova and Cheung’s curators’ note:

Like their counterparts in the West, film festivals in East Asia have proliferated […]. While the oldest festival in the region, the Asia-Pacific Film Festival, has been running since 1954, many younger ones have come into being in the 1990s and 2000s; at least four new festivals came into being in 2010, and a new festival in China’s capital will have its inaugural edition later in 2011. Are these festivals just mimicking the West? Red carpet glamour is not solely confined to the most important A-list film festivals in the West, its symbolism has been taken up by high profile festivals like those in Pusan and Shanghai […]. Their booming film markets that take place in parallel here bring together filmmakers, buyers and sellers from around the world to establish networks and carry out intra-Asia transactions that successfully bracket out Hollywood. The West is only just beginning to wake up to the importance of these film festivals to global film distribution.

Not only are there some fascinating considerations of these issues in prose but, as is In Media Res‘s wont,  there are some fantastic video resources, too – valuable work, indeed.

For more on festivals, do please check out an earlier FSFF post on Film Festival Studies and have a read of the following assorted, high quality studies:

And for some more inspiring viewing watch

>New Senses of Cinema: Assayas, Ava Gardner, Haneke, Morin, Rouch, Epstein, African Francophone cinema, Citizen Kane, digital cinema


One Touch of Venus (William A. Seiter, 1948), starring Robert Walker and Ava Gardner. See Edgar Morin‘s essay on Gardner here.
As ever, Film Studies For Free rushes you the latest e-journal news. Today, the latest Senses of Cinema hit the e-newsstands. Without further bloggish ado, read the below links to contents and weep with film-scholarly joy!

Issue 57 Contents

Feature Articles

Great Directors

Festival Reports

  • Celluloid Liberation Front on Venice

Book Reviews

Cteq Annotations