Introduction to Film Studies
Edited by Jill Nelmes
Routledge – 2012 – 538 pages
Introduction to Film Studies is a comprehensive textbook for students of cinema.
This completely revised and updated fifth edition guides students through the key issues and concepts in film studies, traces the historical development of film and introduces some of the worlds key national cinemas. A range of theories and theorists are presented from Formalism to Feminism, from Eisenstein to Deleuze. Each chapter is written by a subject specialist, including two new authors for the fifth edition. A wide range of films are analysed and discussed. It is lavishly illustrated with 150 film stills and production shots, in full colour throughout. Reviewed widely by teachers in the field and with a foreword by Bill Nichols, it will be essential reading for any introductory student of film and media studies or the visual arts worldwide.
Key features of the fifth edition are:
Individual chapters include: The Industrial Contexts of Film Production · Film and Technology · Getting to the Bigger · Picture Film Form and Narrative · Spectator, Audience and Response · Cinematic authorship and the film auteur · Stardom and Hollywood Cinema · Genre, Theory and Hollywood Cinema The Documentary Form · The Language of Animation · Gender and Film · Lesbian and Gay Cinema · Spectacle, Stereotypes and Films of the African Diaspora · British Cinema · Indian Cinema · Latin American Cinema · Soviet Montage Cinema of the 1920s
Contributors: Linda Craig, Lalitha Gopalan, Terri Francis, Chris Jones, Mark Joyce, Searle Kochberg, Lawrence Napper, Jill Nelmes, Patrick Phillips, Suzanne Speidel, Paul Ward, Paul Watson, Paul Wells and William Wittington
"Introduction to Film Studies remains an indispensible text for entry-level students, and is also a very good source of general reference for more advanced students. The book has definitely evolved from its first edition and has a more comprehensive feel, with more detailed summaries of academic arguments and developed references to fields of study that make it useful to return to as your studies advance. The examples are very up to date, perhaps to a fault, but the book is very valuable in illustrating profound shifts in the nature of the medium formerly known as ‘cinema’ in the context of changes in digital technologies affecting production, distribution, exhibition, and reception. Reading the book I was struck by how things have changed since the appearance of the first edition, and how the editor and contributors have kept up with those changes without losing touch with the rich history of cinema that informs contemporary developments. We will continue to recommend Introduction to Film Studies to our advanced students and it will be required reading at entry level." Dr. Harvey O'Brien, University College Dublin, Ireland
"Nelmes' Introduction to Film Studies perfectly combines introducing students to film as an object of study and to the various ways that film can and has been analyzed within the academy. Its balance between defining film form terminology and providing a history of film with more current film theories is perfect for the course I teach, which includes film studies concentrators and many generally interested students from other disciplines looking for an elective. The text's interdisciplinarity allows me to teach film in meaningful ways to a broad array of students. It also strikes a nice balance between providing sometimes difficult concepts in theorists' original language and explicating the significance of the passages in language students can more comfortably understand. More practically, each chapter serves as a model of analysis and the questions for discussion, and suggested further readings and viewings (as well as related internet resources) allow me to construct assignments that engage the students more fully in the areas they are interested. The case studies are perfect for smaller assignments, and the broader theoretical models can be turned into term projects. The text's applicability of methodology to films and movements (as well as other areas of study, e.g. literature) is easily transferable." Jennifer Fremlin, Huntingdon College, USA
"Offering film studies scholars a comprehensive and inviting starting point, the fifth edition is an astutely revitalised, up-to-date guide to cinema without being ‘trendy’ for the sake of it. The new and detailed discussion of contemporary film technology is a welcome addition, bringing to the fore a frequently neglected topic that today’s students are eager to explore." Dr Steven Allen, University of Winchester, UK
"Introduction to Film Studies is an excellent overview that provides a useful reference and introduction to key topics in Film Studies." John Caro, University of Portsmouth, UK
Praise for previous editions:
"Simply the best introductory volume in the field so far." Jesus B Sanchez, Castilla-La Mancha University, Spain
"Indispensable for the A Level, degree student or lay reader in film, communications or media courses…will indisputably be the standard text for many years to come…close to the perfect film studies textbook you are likely to see." John Lough, Senior Lecturer in Media Theory, University of Humberside, UK
"I highly recommend this text to any student embarking on the study of film…An admirable synthesis of historical, social and theoretical considerations of cinema, presented in an engaging and accessible manner." Alan Burton, De Montfort University, UK
'Probably the clearest, most comprehensive and accessible introduction to film studies available.' Martin Price, Stratford-upon-Avon College, UK
"I know of no other introductory film text that covers so much ground, nor that so readily connects up film theory and discourse with work in mass and popular culture. The revised edition keeps up with changes in technology and the discussions of Hollywood are particularly illuminating…I highly recommend this text." Denise Albanese, George Mason University, USA
"The ideal book for anyone starting Film Studies…Illustrations are plentiful and all important concepts and terminology are accessibly explained. I encourage students to make it their top priority reading." Jeff Thomas, Coleg Gwent, Pontypool, Wales
"This fourth edition is even more comprehensive and accessible than previous editions. The extended range of chapters, which are carefully chosen, display up-to-date scholarship using many recent films and provide a fully rounded and extended introduction to film studies." Pat Brereton, Dublin City University, Ireland
"Introduction to Film Studies is a stimulating and timely reappraisal of why we spend so much time watching films! It offers a fresh perspective on the subject and in an age saturated by the moving image helps us to navigate some difficult terrain." Martin Price, Stratford upon Avon College, UK
"A thoughtful and comprehensive text for analysis of motion pictures as an art form, profession and institution. The fourth edition furthers this study through revising existing chapters and adding critical new research of this compelling medium." James Cho, Nevada State College, USA
Foreward, Bill Nicholls Introduction to the 5th Edition, Jill Nelmes PART I : CINEMA AS INSTITUTION: TECHNOLOGY, INDUSTRY AND AUDIENCE 1. The Industrial contexts of film production, Searle Kochberg 2. Film and Technology, Bill Whittington PART II: APPROACHES TO STUDYING FILM - FORM AND TEXT 3. Getting to the Bigger Picture, Patrick Phillips 4. Film Form and Narrative, Susan Spiedel 5. Spectator, Audience and Response, Patrick Phillips 6. Approaches to Cinematic Authorship, Paul Watson 7. Stardom and Hollywood Cinema, Paul Watson PART III: STUDYNG GENRE 8. Genre theory and Hollywood Cinema, Paul Watson 9. The Documentary Form, Paul Ward 10. The Language of Animation, Paul Wells PART IV: CINEMA, IDENTITY AND THE POLITICS OF REPRESENTATION 11. Gender and Film, Jill Nelmes 12. Lesbian and Gay Cinema, Chris Jones 13. Spectacle, Stereotypes and Films of the African Diaspora, Terri Francis PART V : CINEMA, NATION AND NATIONAL IDENTITY 14. British Cinema, Lawrence Napper 15. Indian Cinema, Lalitha Gopalan 16. Latin American Cinema, Linda Craig 17. The Soviet Montage Cinema of the 1920’s, Mark Joyce
Jill Nelmes is a senior lecturer at the University of East London. Her research interests include gender and film and screenwriting. She recently spent two years studying screenwriting at UCLA and working in the film industry in Los Angeles.