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Beyond the subtitles. Foreign language film offers new insights

Published: 15 July 2013
Film Studies at Southampton

The current popularity of Scandinavian drama, modern Chinese martial art movies and the enduring appeal of French cinema were among the topics discussed at Humanities’ latest Saturday study day.

Sex, Art and Crime: From Brigitte Bardot to Sarah Lund explored the history, creativity and economics of foreign film with an enthusiastic audience of cinema fans at Avenue Campus.

Professor Lucy Mazdon from Film Studies says the event was aimed at encouraging discussion of the place of foreign language films in the UK since film societies and specialist cinemas first showed them to middle class audiences in the 1930s. “Increasing numbers of people are enjoying world cinema but many film fans still don’t like watching movies with subtitles and hate audio dubbing,” she says. “However, I would encourage people to go along and give them a try - they might just like them.”

Members of the public at the study day relished the opportunity to gain new insights into familiar movies from Lucy and her colleagues Dr Sally Keenan and Dr Kevin Donnelly; the first episode of Danish crime drama The Killing was also shown. Guest speaker Ed Fletcher from independent distributors Soda Pictures explained more about the financial side of sourcing and screening new movies. Comments included “It’s an eye-opener to get a new slant on films, we heard completely different ideas of interpretation in various cultures: I always like coming to these events in Southampton as you learn so much: for me, the key theme was how film and TV is driven by international sales and what the producers can afford to make.”

To listen to interviews with the speakers at the event, click on the 'Useful downloads' link to the right of this page.

Lifelong Learning at Southampton presents a range of topics each year ranging from politics to philosophy.

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