I live in Vancouver, BC, Canada. I’m 19 years old, and not in school. I’m trying to find a place where I can take film studies/film criticism. There are 3 local universities that have good programs (UBC, SFU, UVIC) but all of them come with far too lofty requirements and hefty price tags. I would like to keep it local but it seems the only school I could attend that serves my needs is Thompson Rivers U in Kamloops, BC. They offer no formal film program, but if I take the Bachelor of Arts program, there are a few film courses I can take along the way. It’s not great but it’s the only option I’ve found.
I’d prefer not to relocate, but any suggestions are welcome…
I go to the film school of life.
I go to a college in New England, and although we do have a film studies program of sorts, it’s nowhere near as good as those in some of the other universities nearby. That, in addition to the fact that I love film but not enough to want to major in it, is why I have yet to take a film course. I’m signed up for one next semester, and if I want to take a film course before I graduate in June I’m pretty much stuck with that one, but I have reservations about it for a variety of reasons, none of them actually having to do with it being a film course. Anyway, a lot of what I currently know about film is from Wikipedia, online fora like this one, the Criterion booklets, etc. It’s become kind of a private project for me.
I guess what I’m trying to say that you may not need to go to a school that has a film studies dept. Of course, you’re free to do what you want and YMMV, but if going to any of the places you have listed simply is not feasible, it is entirely possible to learn film studies/criticism on your own, by reading, etc. Also, some schools will let you do an independent study for a semester; if the one you choose has that option, you can pick a prof that has at least a passing interest in film and then do a project on whatever—in my school, a lot of these profs are in the English department as well as film studies, so you can find them in other departments.
So, yeah. Really long post, but having to go to Kamloops doesn’t have to be an option.
I dig both responses.
Bookwibble, I completely agree about learning by one’s self. That’s what I’ve been doing and it’s going fine. The two main reasons I would really like to attend an actual school for film stuff are as follows:
1. I would like to eventually work in a film related job, preferably in a writing capacity. Having a degree of some sort would go some length in helping that become a reality.
2. I have no interest in anything else. Not enough to focus on it in college, anyways.
Anyways, I appreciate the advice, and perhaps just going about it on my own would be more rewarding anyways.
Adam, look in to the Langara FilmArts program. Its better than VFS and is a third the price. You can enter one of three streams: Directing, Writing or Acting. Run by old UBC profs and industry professionals, the only academic class is film history. It’s only 8 months and you build important connections and have lots of freedom to make what you like.
But don’t rely on film school to make you a good film maker. Gain life experience, read books, build relationships and work hard. Most importantly keep watching great films. I recommend two a day from now until death.
Also, read Ray Carney
If you want to make it in film, I suggest you go back and get the grade requirements. (I have friends who have done this) and then goto a good film school. There you can get into internships, post grad positions and network with students, all who are extremely talented and gifted.