Criterion Goes to Film School . . . Finally!

Some people have called us “film school in a box,” but this is the real deal. The essential film school introductory textbook, David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson’s Film Art: An Introduction, is coming out in its tenth edition in the summer, and will now use online examples drawn from films available as part of the Criterion Collection. Theirs was the first major textbook to be illustrated with actual frame grabs instead of publicity stills, and now those images will move. In the videos, intended for use by teachers and their students, Bordwell and Thompson explore key concepts in cinema—mise–en-scène, lighting, cinematography, sound, and editing—through examples from our films. Their examples are short and to the point, and we’ve included one about elliptical editing in Agnes Varda’s Vagabond below. We can’t think of a better way for new generations of cinephiles to discover the films available in the Criterion Collection than through the eyes of Bordwell and Thompson, who unlock the coded language of film, elucidate its techniques, and reveal how filmmakers use their tools to make meaning and tell stories. For a more thorough rundown, see Bordwell and Thompson’s blog post here.

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