Summer Course: JMSC and Art Faculty Team Up for Film, Art, Language and Culture

This summer, the JMSC combined with the Faculty of Arts to teach a credit bearing course for undergraduates about Film, Art, Language and Culture.

Film, Art, Language and Culture Summer MAP Course

Fifteen students from HKU, mainland China and on exchange programmes took part.

The intensive four week course was split in two parts.

Dr Fiona Law from the Department of Comparative Literature in the Arts Faculty taught film appreciation for two weeks and the JMSC’s Visiting Associate Professor and filmmaker, Nancy Tong and Ng Ka-Ho, a Teaching Assistant at the JMSC, taught film production for the final two weeks.

The course examined key ways of analysing film, art and culture — looking at how films create meaning and how viewers make sense of the cinema.

Students learned basic film terminology and the rudiments of film form. They looked at Hollywood cinema, other national cinemas, transnational cinemas, as well as hybrid, experimental and documentary film modes.

Shooting the hip hop documentaries

Tong and Ng’s input ensured that the course had a heavy practical component of filming, editing and producing.

Under their supervision, students spent a week learning interview techniques, how to record film and how to structure a video story.

Over the weekend they split into three groups of five to shoot short documentaries about a hip hop dance group at HKU. In the second week, they learned how to edit using Final Cut Pro and put together their documentaries.

Still from one of the documentaries

“Nancy and I were really pleased with how quickly the students picked up production techniques,” Ng said.

“The documentaries they produced were really impressive.”