Society for Cinema and Media Studies 2013 Conference Papers and Contributions Online

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Video Essays and Scholarly Remix: Film Scholarship’s Emergent Forms – Audiovisual Film Studies, Pt 2

Catherine Grant will discuss the above companion piece to her video essay Touching the Film Object? at a workshop on “Video Essays: Film Scholarship’s Emergent Form” at the 2012 Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference, 5pm on March 22, 2012 in Boston.
     Her fellow workshop participants will include Christian Keathley (Middlebury College), Girish Shambu (Canisius College), Benjamin Sampson (UCLA), Richard Misek (University of Kent), Craig Cieslikowski (University of Florida) and Matthias Stork (UCLA).  

In her book Death 24x a Second, Laura Mulvey considered how the intersection of cinema with various digital technologies has changed film studies in recent decades.  Most obviously, DVDs allow film scholars unprecedented access to high-quality copies of our objects of study, and the internet has supplemented this with a wealth of online critical and archival material.  As a result, these various digital tools have significantly enhanced film scholars’ research and teaching.  But this intersection of cinema and digital technologies has brought not just accessibility, but the potential for dramatic transformation in the study of film.  Mulvey wrote, “New ways of consuming old movies on electronic and digital technologies,” she wrote, “should bring about a ‘reinvention’ of textual analysis and a new wave of cinephilia.”

One place where this ‘reinvention’ of analysis and revived cinephilia can be seen is in the emergence recently of a new scholarly form — the video essay.  Practitioners of this form are exploring the ways in which digital technologies afford a new way of conducting and presenting film research — for the full range of digital technologies enables film scholars to write using the very materials that constitute their object of study: moving images and sounds.  Examples of this video essay work can be readily viewed online, especially at the Moving Image Source website, and at the vimeo site Audiovisualcy .  But most of the work in this new form is being produced by scholars outside academia (with some key exceptions), in part because the strictures of written academic discourse pose a challenge for this nascent form of multi-media scholarship.

This workshop — which will include presentations by film scholars who are also video essay producers — will consider the challenges faced in legitimizing the video essay as a valid form of academic scholarship.  The participants will address such issues as: How does the use of images and sounds in the presentation of scholarship demand a rethinking of the rhetorical strategies employed by the film scholar?  How does aesthetics play a role in an academic discourse that aims to produce knowledge and emotional response?  How would teaching courses on video essays help legitimize the form, and how might such instruction be undertaken?  How might emerging scholars situate themselves as leaders of this emerging academic mode? [SCMS workshop proposal drafted by Christian Keathley, author of the must-read essay ‘La caméra-stylo: Notes on Video Criticism and Cinephilia’, in Alex Clayton and Andrew Klevan (eds.), The Language and Style of Film Criticism. London: Routledge, 2011]

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[H]apticity — a grasp of what can be sensed of an object in close contact with it — seems to me now to be very helpful in conceiving what can take place in the process of creating videographic film studies. It can also help us more fully to understand videographic studies as objects to be experienced themselves.

In the old days, the only people who really got to touch films were those who worked on them, particularly film editors. As Annette Michelson (1990) and others have argued, the democratization of the ‘heady delights’ of editing (Michelson, 1990: 22) was brought about by the introduction of video technology in the 1970s and 80s. Now, with the relatively wide availability of digital technology, we can even more easily share ‘the euphoria one feels at the editing table […] a sharpening cognitive focus and […] a ludic sovereignty, grounded in that deep gratification of a fantasy of infantile omnipotence ” [Michelson, 1990: 23].

But, are there other ways in which ‘touching film’ is just a fantasy? In videographic film studies, do videographers actually touch or handle the real matter of the film? Or are we only ever able to touch upon the film experience? Our film experiences? Do video essays only make objects of, or objectify, our film experiences, our insuperable memories of them, our own cinematic projections?

These questions may not flag up significantly new limitations. Film critical video essays do seem to work, it seems to me, in the same ‘intersubjective’ zone as that of written film criticism. As Andrew Klevan and Alex Clayton argue of this zone, ‘we are immersed in the film as the critic sees it, hence brought to share a deeply involved perspective’ (2011: 9).

Yet, in videographical criticism, is there not a different intersubjective relation, a more transitional one, to the physicality or materiality of the objective elements of films that the video essays reproduce? Like written essays, video essays may well ‘”stir our recall”‘ (Klevan and Clayton, 2011: 9) of a film moment or sequence, but they usually do this by confronting us with a replay of the actual sequence, too. How might this difference count?

If nothing else, this confrontation with, or, to put it more gently, this inevitable re-immersion in the film experience, ought to make videographic critics pursue humility in their analytical observations with an even greater focus, make them especially ‘willing to alter [their analyses] according to what [they come into] contact with […] give up ideas when they stop touching the other’s surface’ (Marks, 2004: 80).

A further, built-in, random element in non-linear digital video editing — the fact that this process frequently confronts the editor with graphic matter from the film (e.g. thumbnails) that s/he may not specifically have chosen to dwell on — may also encourage a particularly humble, usefully (at times) non-instrumental form of looking that Swalwell (2002) detects in Marks’ notion of hapticity.

As Marks writes, ‘Whether criticism is haptic, in touch with its object, is a matter of the point at which the words lift off’ (2004: 80). Haptic criticism must be what happens, then, when the words don’t lift off the surface of the film object, if they (or any of the other film-analytical elements conveyed through montage or other non-linear editing techniques and tools) remain on the surface of the film object, as they often do in videographic film studies. In addition to this, video essays on films may often be an especially ‘superficial‘ form of criticism, frequently using slow motion or zoom-in effects to allow those experiencing them to close in on the grain or detail of the film image.

With so many words, or other filmanalytical strategies, simultaneously available to be sensed on the surface of the image and, in terms of sound strategies (such as voiceovers or other added elements), seeming to emanate from it, videographical film studies may be curiously haptic objects, then. It is useful to remember that the art historical concept of haptic visuality emerged from the scholarly and artistic traditions of formalism, which made procedures such as defamiliarization central to their practice. Defamiliarization — the uncanny distancing effect of an altered perspective on (such as a hyper-proximity to) an otherwise familiar object — may be one of the greatest benefits of the particular hapticity of videographical film criticism. [Catherine Grant, ‘Touching the Film Object’, Filmanalytical, August 29, 2011: citing Laura U. Marks, ‘Haptic Visuality: Touching with the Eyes’, Framework” the Finnish Art Review, No. 2, 2004 (large pdf – scroll down to p. 79); Andrew Klevan and Alex Clayton, ‘Introduction’, in Clayton and Klevan (eds.), The Language and Style of Film Criticism. London: Routledge, 2011; and Michelson,  Annette, ‘The Kinetic Icon in the work of Mourning: Prolegomena for the Analysis of a Textual System,’ October 52 (Spring 1990)]

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One of the elements that Film Studies For Free appreciates most about online audiovisual film studies (film studies in digital video forms) are the phenomenological possibilities they offer viewers for the experiencing of moving image and sound juxtapositions in real time. We can synchronously feel, as well as know about, the comparisons they make. In other words, unlike written texts, they don’t have to remove themselves from film-specific forms of meaning production to have their knowledge effects on us. [Catherine Grant, ‘Garden of forking paths? Hitchcock’s BLACKMAILs – a real-time comparison’, Film Studies For Free, March 12, 2012]

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What interests me most in academic study is the exploration of what Gérard Genette called “transtextuality”, that is to say, “everything that brings the text into relation (manifest or hidden) with other texts” (Genette, Palimpsestes, 1992: 81). Sometimes this interest alights on matters of cultural influence and film authorship (see here, for example), but often it focuses itself on the issue of the recognition of cinematic interconnectedness.

Now, in an age of digital and multimedia scholarship, how better to explore filmic connections of different kinds than to use the format of the video mashup? [This video essay on Peeping Tom and Code Unknown] is, then, the first in a series of “scholarly mashups” […] examining the obvious and obscure connections between particular films in ways that are both striking and, hopefully, more precisely illuminating with regard to their form as films, than comparisons performed purely in non-audiovisual formats might be. [Catherine Grant, ‘True likeness: Peeping Tom and Code inconnu/Code Unknown’, Filmanalytical, June 26, 2010]

Here is the second entry in a mini-series of posts here at Film Studies For Free on the practical possibilities for, and the critical debates about, audiovisual film studies research and ‘publication’.

Today the focus is on two of film scholarship’s emergent forms, much loved by FSFF: video essays on, or scholarly remixes about, film. The above quotations draw attention to the range of issues these forms  raise for film studies: from the changes they involve in the processes of film studies research to the questions they pose about its publication forms and knowledge effects, as well as the possible roles for creativity and affect in our discipline.

The occasion for this latest meditation is an upcoming workshop discussion at the annual conference of the U.S. Society for Cinema and Media Studies. But  there are also a whole raft of online developments in, and other important, recent, publications on, this genre that FSFF wanted to flag up. Those are listed below.

Beneath all the links you will find embedded versions of some of the online video essays by FSFF‘s very talented, fellow workshop panellists and respondents in Boston. (You can find all of FSFF‘s audiovisual essays here).

If you are able to come to the workshop, hurray! Do please say hello to us all at the end! If you can’t come but would like us to discuss any questions you have about video essays, do post those in the comments below. Thanks.

FSFF will take a little blogging break during and after the SCMS conference, but will tirelessly tweet during the conference, reporting on panels attended and other events. So do please follow @filmstudiesff if you’d like those updates.

Otherwise, see you back here sometime in early April.

Christian Keathley, Pass the Salt
 

Garden of forking paths? Hitchcock’s BLACKMAILs – a real-time comparison

Having begun production as a silent film, the studio, British International Pictures, decided to convert [Blackmail (directed by Alfred Hitchcock, 1929)] to sound during shooting. A silent version was released [probably only in Britain] for theaters not equipped for sound (at 6740 feet), with the sound version (7136 feet) released at the same time.[*] The silent version still exists in the British Film Institute collection.[**] [Blackmail Wikipedia entry, last accessed March 12, 2012]
Critic and historian Charles Barr, in his 1976 article “Blackmail: Silent and Sound”, in which he closely compares the two versions, notes that the silent version shows Hitchcock striving to escape a ‘theatrical’ style in which the action is generally viewed face on, with the camera occupying the position of the ‘fourth wall’. In a theatre, this represents the position of the proscenium arch, which marks the boundary between a conventional stage and the audience.
     In the silent version, Hitchcock experimented with changing the position of the camera within a scene, and tried to avoid ‘face-on’ set-ups, that is, where the camera is placed at ninety degrees to the action. Because of the limitations of sound at this early stage – for example the need to position the microphone where it can pick up all of the actors in the scene but cannot be seen – Hitchcock was obliged to adopt a less experimental approach in the framing of the sound version. [Mark Duguid, ‘Hitchcock’s Style’, BFI Screenonline]
Although 1929 was rather late for a “first” sound film, the delay enabled Hitchcock to produce an advanced meditation on the possible uses of sound. The text incorporates silent footage (lifted whole from the original silent version, made immediately prior to the sound version), which allows for a series of comparisons/contrasts between sound and silents/silence. The conceit of this early sound film is an attempt to keep a man silent (paying off a blackmailer). The heroine spends over a third of the film virtually speechless. When she finally speaks, her boyfriend urges her to keep quiet. The dialogue is laughably banal, yet the right word can cut like a knife. The opening scene, an exciting silent chase, is immediately contrasted with a poorly dubbed, confusingly cut dialogue scene that seems as if it will never end. But before we glibly assume silents were “better” movies, sound becomes a moral force, while silence is linked with corruption and moral lassitude.
     The text’s position on “sound plus image” versus “image alone” is carefully paralleled with the depiction of Alice. Thematically, she veers from one extreme to the other. She is introduced as a chatterbox. After a violent assault, she becomes almost catatonic. Finally, she accepts speech as a moral imperative, achieving maturity and the audience’s respect before slipping back under patriarchal control and enforced silence. Alice White becomes Hitchcock’s personification of the course the sound film must take. [Amy Lawrence, Echo and Narcissus: Women’s Voices in Classical Hollywood Cinema (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991), p. 119]

Hitchcock first makes us aware that he is distorting the sound track subjectively when he exaggerates the loudness of bird chirpings to stress Alice’s agitation on the morning after the murder. When the mother enters Alice’s bedroom to wake her, she uncovers the cage of Alice’s canary. Once the mother leaves the room, the bird’s chirping is loudly insistent while the girl takes off the clothes she wore the night before and puts on fresh ones. The chirps are loudest, unnaturally so, when she is looking at herself in the mirror, the most “interior” action she performs while dressing. The sound reminds us of the tiny, birdlike jerkings that the girl made immediately after stabbing the artist. Just after the knife sequence there is another subjective distortion of sound, when a customer rings a bell as he enters the store. We are in the breakfast parlor, and yet the bell resonates much more loudly than it does elsewhere in the film. The camera is on a close-up of Alice’s face to indicate that it is her point of view, once again, from which we hear.
     In a sense the use of bird noises in the bedroom scene should be distinguished from the other techniques mentioned here. Whereas aural restriction and distortion of loudness are related to character point of view, the choice specifically of bird sounds has a particular meaning for Hitchcock independent of the film. This sequence marks the beginning of an ongoing association of murder and bird noises in Hitchcock’s mind that accrues meaning from film to film, from Blackmail and Murder through Sabotage (1936), Young and Innocent (1937), and Psycho, and culminates in The Birds. [Elizabeth Weiss, ‘Chapter 2: First Experiments with Sound: Blackmail and Murder in The Silent Scream – Alfred Hitchcock’s Soundtrack (Rutherford, Fairleigh: Dickinson University Press, 1982) p. 46]

One of the elements that Film Studies For Free appreciates most about online audiovisual film studies (film studies in digital video forms) are the phenomenological possibilities they offer viewers for the experiencing of moving image and sound juxtapositions in real time. We can synchronously feel, as well as know about, the comparisons they make. In other words, unlike written texts, they don’t have to remove themselves from film-specific forms of meaning production to have their knowledge effects on us.

Embedded above is FSFF‘s homemade example of this kind of simple, more or less medium-specific, eloquence: a real-time video juxtaposition, made for the purposes of scholarly comparison, of corresponding sequences from the silent and sound versions of Alfred Hitchcock‘s Blackmail (1929). It is a work intended to supplement the contribution of an earlier blog entry here, entitled Thrilling the Ears: Sound in Hitchcock’s cinema in which the two sequences were separately embedded.

But it is also intended to publicise FSFF‘s support, as ever, for the very relevant For the Love of Film Preservation Blogathon which will take place this year between May 13-18, 2012 . The blogathon has a Hitchcock theme and will support an important film preservation and dissemination project focusing on an early ‘Hitchcock film’: The White Shadow (1923).

You can read more about the blogathon below, and much more about it at the linked-to websites. But suffice to say this may not be the last Hitchcockian video study here at Film Studies For Free this Spring!

It’s time to reveal our fundraising project for 2012: Online streaming and recording of the new score for THE WHITE SHADOW, directed by Graham Cutts and everything else done by Alfred Hitchcock. It’s all about access this year, folks. [For the Love of Film Preservation Blogathon Facebook page, February 1, 2012]

The good people at National Film Preservation Foundation are committed to making many of the films they have rescued available for cost-free viewing by streaming them on their website. But online hosting ain’t cheap. NFPF estimates that it will cost $15,000 to stream The White Shadow for four months and record the score. It is the mission of this year’s For the Love of Film Blogathon to raise that money so that anyone with access to a computer can watch this amazing early film that offered Hitchcock a chance to learn his craft, with a score that does it justice. [Marilyn Ferdinand introducing the cause supported by this year’s For the Love of Film [Hitchcock] Blogathon at her website Ferdy on Films]

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    Pandora’s Box? On Digital Conversions and Rebirths

    Open Lecture and Workshop by FSFF‘s very own author

    First of all, Film Studies For Free wanted to toot on its own trumpet today.

    On Friday, its author will present at an event exploring the rapidly increasing take up in scholarly and online film studies of the distinct research methods of the digital humanities.

    In the lecture that will open the event, she will explore whether and, if so, how these contexts and methods with their digital, multimedia tools and techniques (such as online film and film culture archiving, mining and metrics, digital video essays, digital publishing and networking) may be enabling productive moves away from the existing paradigms of purely text-based, or ‘traditional’ offline research, scholarship and pedagogy.  The focus in the main workshop part of the event will be on the film studies video essay form, that is, on the practice of using film as the medium of its own study and criticism.

    A written version of the talk will be published online later this year as part of a wide ranging edited collection, with contributions by world-leading scholars and critics, on related aspects of the same important topics. This collection, commissioned, assembled and guest-edited by FSFF‘s supremo, will form the inaugural issue of a brand new, Open Access journal hosted by a certain Film Studies department in one of the UK’s oldest and most revered universities. FSFF will bring you more precise, less teasing, news of this in due course….

    But, staying with the digital theme, today’s FSFF post also brings you rather more immediately phenomenal news of and links to David Bordwell‘s recent and hugely important online series of studies of the transition to digital cinematic projection at his and Kristin Thompson’s peerless film studies website Observations on Film Art.

    Not only are these unmissable discussions in their own right but they make themselves even more indispensable by linking to numerous further essential resources on these questions.

    Below the list of links to these entries, for your convenience, FSFF has re-embedded the great videoed discussion of digital conversion issues in the film distribution and exhibition contexts at the Vancouver International Film Festival to which Bordwell and other luminaries contribute brilliantly.

    1. Pandora’s digital box: In the multiplex December 1, 2011 
    2. Pandora’s digital box: The last 35 picture show December 15, 2011 
    3. Pandora’s digital box: At the festival January 5, 2012 
    4. Pandora’s digital box: From the periphery to the center, or the one of many centers January 11, 2012
    5. Pandora’s digital box: Art house, smart house January 30, 2012
    6. Pandora’s digital box: Pix and pixels February 13, 2012
    7. Pandora’s digital box: Notes on NOCs [Network Operations Centers] February 16, 2012
    8. Pandora’s digital box:from Films to Files February 28, 2012

    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.

    More Victor Perkins Video Interviews Online from Saarbruecken

    Film Studies For Free very excitedly learnt of the posting of five more fascinating and hugely insightful extracts from the marvellous recorded interview with legendary film scholar V.F. Perkins which took place at the Kino 8 1/2 in Saarbrücken, Germany, and was filmed by Media Art and Design Studiengang. They are available online here.

    If you missed the earlier seven interview extracts you can find them in one handy place (and, let’s say it: FSFF is one very handy place!) here.

    What more need FSFF say, than “Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy, enjoy, and enjoy”!

    Great Video Lectures by Friedberg, Dupin, Rodowick, Chateau, Nowell-Smith, Stewart, Grieveson, Furstenau, Zryd, and White

    Image from Grbavica: Land of My Dreams/Esma’s Secret: Grbavica (Jasmila Žbanić , 2006), an example of ‘global women’s cinema’ as explored by Patricia White in a 2008 lecture and in a forthcoming book (you can see a clip from this film about 36 minutes into White’s talk, and the film’s website is here)

    Thanks to the website of the Permanent Seminar on the Histories of Film Theory, which Film Studies For Free featured yesterday, FSFF heard about another highly worthwhile online resource (although one that appears not to be being updated, currently): the website of Advanced Research Team for the History and Epistemology of Moving Image Study (ARTHEMIS).

    ARTHEMIS is dedicated to the study of the evolution of film studies as a discipline. Based at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema in Concordia University and initiated by Martin Lefebvre, it gathers scholars from Canada, the United States and Europe. The group organizes, among other things, monthly seminars related to the different axes of research. [Some] are available on this site. We invite you to listen to the conferences and submit your comments. In addition, you will find on this site an evolving bibliography and book reviews.

    The ARTHEMIS project also investigates the study of film and moving images by looking at three of its most important ‘possibility conditions’: Conceptual conditions; Institutional conditions; Material Conditions.

    There are plenty of items worth exploring at ARTHEMIS. But FSFF was most struck by the series of online lectures from 2008/9 that are archived at the site. Here’s the list of links to these – some truly wonderful items. FSFF particularly liked Patricia White’s lecture on “Globalizing Women’s Cinema”

    Permanent Seminar on the Histories of Film Theory

    Picture of Sergei Eisenstein, pioneering Soviet film director and theorist

    Thanks to Michał Oleszczyk, Film Studies For Free found out about a truly fascinating, and highly promising, project: the Permanent Seminar on the Histories of Film Theory.

    The Seminar is

    an open network of film scholars interested in rediscovering and re-reading historical contributions and debates on film. Special attention is devoted to early writings on cinema, as well as more recent reconsiderations of film’s role in the new media landscape. The Permanent Seminar is affiliated with the Film Theory in Media History book series published through the Amsterdam University Press.

    The very high quality of the project is guaranteed by its coordinators — Jane Gaines (Columbia University) and Francesco Casetti (Yale University & University of Milan) —  as well as by its scientific board: Dudley Andrew (Yale University); Chris Berry (University of London-Goldsmiths); André Gaudreault (University of Montréal); Vinzenz Hediger (University of Bochum); John McKay (Yale University); Markus Nornes (University of Michigan); David Rodowick (Harvard University); Philip Rosen (Brown University); Leonardo Quaresima (University of Udine); Maria “Masha” Salazkina (Concordia University, Montréal); and Petr Szczepanik (University of Brno).

    There’s not much up on the website yet as the project has just begun, but FSFF recommends that its readers take a look and then keep on going back for further film-theoretical delights of the kind linked to below.

    • Sergei Eisenstein, “Forthcoming] “Unpublished “Notes for a General History of Cinema” – New York, 2010
    • Giovanni Papini, “Philosophical Observations on the Motion Picture” (Italy, 1907)
    • Mario Ponzo, “Certain Psychological Observations Made During Motion Picture Screenings” (Italy, 1911)

    >Audiovisualcy: Videographic Film Studies

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    Logo for Audiovisualcy at Vimeo

    At the weekend, Film Studies For Free‘s author dreamt of a beautiful online archive, gathering together works in the burgeoning scholarly and critical genre of video essays about films and moving image studies. 

    A little feverish curatorial and neologistical work later, the marvellous dream became a reality.  Audiovisualcy is that reality.

    Audiovisualcy is a group page at Vimeo which gathers together in one handy and easy to find place, the numerous video essays about films, film studies and film theory already posted at that video hosting site by individual users. Twenty-eight videos [more than seventy, as of April 12], on all manner of films, are available for your perusal so far. More will be added as they are discovered or created.

    If you join the group, you will automatically receive updates as new videos are posted, but you can also follow @AUDIOVISUALCY and get those at Twitter, too. If you know of any other relevant video essays at Vimeo or ones hosted on other sites, you can let the group know about them by emailing us here, and, if appropriate, these will be added and publicised.

    If you are curious about the possibilities for Film Studies or for film criticism offered by this format, do please check out the links to the work of some of more prolific, and (beginning with Matt Zoller Seitz) talented, essayists, below.

    Catherine Grant: 
    Matt Zoller Seitz:
    Kevin B. Lee:
    Steven Santos:
    Jim Emerson:
    Kartina Richardson:
    Jason Bellamy:
    Ben Sampson:
    Paul Malcolm:
    Eric Faden:
    Also see the following online journals which have regularly published video essays: