Celebrate Your Love of Film

VIU English is the place to indulge and celebrate your passion for film and TV! Bring your curiosity about why some movies stand the test of time, why some books make great movies (or not!), and how TV and film continue to shape our culture.  

VIU’s English Department is home to a rich variety of courses in film and television studies.  Our film and TV courses run in the evenings to allow for full screenings and lively discussion, and they’re accessible to students of all levels.  300-level courses are open to students with third-year standing, Love of Learning students, or with permission of the instructor.

See our Courses page for more detail on all the courses offered by VIU English.

Register now for 2019-2020! 

FALL 2019 

Professor Paul Watkins 

A general introduction to the study of film as an art form and a medium of cultural communication. Film is a language of idea and its images and ideas, and it is images and ideas that excite us when we watch a film in the dark. Students will get a basic understanding of the technical aspects of a film, including cinematography, editing, mise-en-scène, and sound. The course will draw material and concepts from Richard Barsam and David Monahan’s Looking at Movies: An Introduction to Film, and lectures will include academic context for the various films we watch, from Citizen Kane (1941) to Black Panther (2018)

Time: Th 18:00-21:00    

Professor Jay Ruzesky

This course will explore the relationship between Canadian writing and the large and small screen. Did you know Phyllis Webb had her own TV show? that P.K. wrote filmscripts for the NFB? We will look at the way that visual media has influenced Canadian literature and the way Canadian literature has made its way onto film and TV screens. Canlit’s association with film begins at the beginning of film in 1987 and continues through to today’s streaming services. 

Time: Th 18:00-21:00

SPRING 2020 

Professor Clay Armstrong

A continuation of Film 101, this course will strengthen critical perspectives on film by examining how narrative technique, acting, cinematography, editing, mise-en-scene and sound all work together to convey meaning. Students will study motion pictures that both establish and subvert filmmaking conventions in a range of genres including Gangster, Western, Historical Drama, and War. In addition to Genre Studies, we will introduce other schools in Film Theory and consider how events such as the #MeToo Movement and the rise of Netflix have impacted filmmaking. Screenings may include the work of Martin Scorsese, Chris Eyre, Joel and Ethan Coen, Spike Lee, Quentin Tarantino, and Kathryn Bigelow. Viewer discretion is advised. 

Time: Th 18:00-21:00

Professor Melissa Stephens

An interdisciplinary examination of literature and film. Topics may include relations between novels, comics, or scripts and cinematic adaptation; the comparative study of themes, national traditions, or theoretical concerns in both media; formal concerns and strategies; genres; or myth. ENGL 233 was formerly called ENGL 271 and ENGL 272; credit will not be granted for both courses. 

Time: We 13:00-16:00

Professor Clay Armstrong

A study of narrative developed for film. Discussion may involve analysis of genre, plot, characters, themes, symbolism, cinematography, mise-en-scène, editing, sound, acting, and ideologies. The course may be structured as a broad survey or with a focus on a single director or theme.

Time: Mon 18:00-21:00


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