National Cinemas Film Course

“I love French Film.” It is an often heard expression. But what does it mean? What elements do make a typical French, Italian or American Indie movie? By discussing the cultural and social influences on different national cinemas, Coen Haver tries to find an answer to that question.

Part 1: Dutch Film

Behind the facade of Calvanism.

From the bourgeois lifestyle in Van Warmerdam’s The Northeners to the sexual revolt in Paul Verhoeven’s Turkish Delight, the Dutch Film has never ceased to be at least controversial.

Part 2: Italian Film

The dark side of la dolce vita.

Italian neorealism and new-neorealism alternate between realism and metaphor, always concentrating on themes such as destruction and death, tempered by a vitality and dark sense of humor.

Part 3: French Film

The birth place of cinema.

By taking a closer look on the Nouvelle Vague and today’s new realism, it becomes apparant how France could shape film-making  around the world and become Europe’s leading film making country.

Part 4: American Indies

They keep Hollywood alive.

Indie films are being produced outside the studio system, with lower budgets and little commercial results. They are, nontheless, of huge importance in the development of American’s tentpoles.

Part 5: Korean Film

The power of the Chaebols.

From the early 90’s, Korean conglomerates started to finance, produce and distribute Korean films, resulting in internationally acclaimed blockbusters such as Oldboy, Train to Busan and The Host. 

Part 6: German Film

The New German Cinema.

The erection of the wall created a collapse of the German Film Industry. It took years and some of the best modern film makers (i.e. Fassbinder and Herzog) to create a highly acclaimed new German Cinema.

Part 7: Spanish Film (opt.)

Gazpacho and flower balconies.

After Franco’s death, a new wave of Spanish authors emerge. Not only are the films of Bollain, Medem and Almodóvar a critically acclaimed, they are also the first film makers with national commercial success. 

Part 8: Polish Film (opt.)

Film as a conflict of interest.

The Cinema of Moral Anxiety was the first new wave in European cinema that combined art and philosophy, focussing on the anxiety and conflict of interest as the foundation of cinema.

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