IMDB Quick Research Guide

Hi class…

Just a quick step-by-step to finding things on IMDB. 🙂

  1. Go to (duh!)

2. Search for the film you are researching:

3. Er… look. You’ve found the page! 

4. Scroll down the page until you see “Company Credits”. Click “See more >>” to get fuller details.

5. The first part of this section (Production Companies) tells you who actually produced (made) the film. As a general guide, more production companies usually suggest a smaller/independent film. The risk is spread across more people, and they each put up less money in the first place.

P.S. Consider the difference between Atomic Blonde‘s list of production companies with Cars 3

You can often find more information about the film on Wikipedia, or a film’s official website, or newspaper articles, or Rotten Tomatoes, or… well, you get the idea! 🙂

Next up will be a wee bit help with part 2 of the homework. In the meantime, don’t forget to sign up for

You Must Remember This…

So, whit a film!

casablancaposter-goldThere are no shortage of useful and free resources to help you learn more about Casablanca.

IMDB will give you plenty of technical, box office, cast/crew, and quotations…

Sparknotes has more ‘study’ related materials…

And we will be looking in some depth at the four scenes highlighted in the Film Education guide.

Finally,  if in doubt, there’s always The Simpsons

Public Health Warning

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Moon Hitler!

OK… you asked, so here it is! This is the list of Netflix films I put together for last year’s class at Christmas (BTW: You should check out New on Netflix which allows you to find and search the NF catalogue much more easily than using NF itself!). There are wee comments from me about every one, and you will not like every film on the list… but then, I’ll bet there are a load of films you like that I wouldn’t, so let’s call it quits.

The Health Warning Bit is simply because Netflix change their list regularly, and so I cannot guarantee that all the films are still available. I will produce an updated list in December.

Click on the image to download the list as a PDF file, and please feel free to leave a comment or two here if you agree/disagree with any of the selections, or even better, if you’ve got any Netflix suggestions of your own.

PS: If you have Amazon Prime you may have access to some more of these, or ones that have disappeared from Netflix… Happy Viewing! 🙂

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Sunset Song

Right, we’re going to the cinema. To see this…

It’s the long awaited film of the greatest Scottish novel, Sunset Song.

It’s been made by Terence Davies, who is an outstanding British film maker you have probably never heard of. It will be slow paced and will likely require you to concentrate on a film more than you have ever done before. And it will look gorgeous and likely break your heart. It opens on the 4th December, and I’ll let you know which showing I plan to invade as soon as I get word from the Playhouse.

The last of the Peasants, the last of the old Scots folk. A new generation comes up that will know them not , except as a memory in a song.

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Cinematic TV

This post starts with a serious hat tip to Alisdair Satchel. He’s an actor, writer, director, and generally all-round good guy (who I’m hoping to drag in to speak to you some time) and who pointed me at a really interesting ‘essay’* that I strongly recommend you take 15 minutes to watch.

Screen Shot 2015-10-28 at 20.19.25It’s called “What Does ‘Cinematic TV’ Really Mean?” and explains with some fantastic examples why TV and film are not really the same… though some TV does use elements of film to tell its stories. It’s worth your while watching because it mentions (sometimes just in passing) several important institutional concepts (such as the need to film quickly for TV and how this leads to a bias for ‘shot-reverse-shot’ filming), and it may also give the more switched on of you ideas for improving your own films (and watch the bit at about 10 minutes for a really great idea I’d love to see you think about!).

Finally, while the link to the original article is above, I would actually recommend you use THIS LINK as it will open the video only in a tab/window at much higher resolution (at least on my setup). I haven’t worked out how to download it for saving (yet), so you’re on your own for this one.

PS: The video will always play you an advert first… 😦 I’ve seen an advert for flu jabs by NHS England 3 times now… At least I’ll get it free here!

PPS: Keep your eyes out for Terence Stamp playing more to type in a clip from The Limey!

*How would you go about submitting a ‘film’ as an essay for one of your subjects? 😉