29th Mar 2016: Terence Sawyers presents About Film; Vertigo (1958)

Come along to the Brass Monkey on Drummond Street on Tuesday 29th March between 18:30 and 21:30 for the first in a series of About Film nights where we watch a film and then discuss it afterwards…


About Film is a free monthly film night, we show a film and then have a group discussion afterwards. Everyone is invited to participate and no prior knowledge is required. It is not necessary to ‘book’ a place as the event will be open to all, but committing to coming will give us a heads-up about numbers.

The Film: Vertigo (1958)

Hitchcock’s film was not well received when released but is now considered an important work of cinema. James Stewart plays Scottie a vertigo suffering ex-policeman and Kim Novak plays the woman (women?) he falls in love with. Many Hitchcock tropes are here; procedural investigation, steely blondes and thrilling climaxes.
Frequent Hitchcock collaborator, Bernard Hermann provides the score and successfully underlines the eerie Ghost Story element of the film. San Francisco provides the location of this visual treat.

We will be watching the 1996 restoration by Harris and Katz, from a DVD projected onto a screen.

The Discussion: What is Film Theory?

As the first About Film this cycle we will start at the very beginning by asking what Film Theory is. We will discuss different definitions of Film Theory and what use, if any, they have for audiences. Key to this will be a comparison between Theory and Criticism, are these terms synonymous or do they describe fundamentally different approaches for us to follow?
My feeling is that all film audiences engage in Film Theory and have an intuitive understanding of it, even if they do not know the terminology or fancy writers! This will not be a one-to-many talk, participation will be encouraged and opinions shared.

The venue: Brass Monkey, Drummond Street

The Brass Monkey is a venue that loves cinema, with film posters adorning the walls and a cinema room in the back. There is no entrance fee and the bar is well supplied with liquor, hot drinks and snacks (including sandwiches). There is no wheelchair access, sorry. If anyone has any concerns about access or facilities don’t hesitate to get in touch and we can give some advice.

The cinema room has a small number of hardback chairs but is mostly filled with large sofas, ideal for lounging. We will provide some popcorn, and you can bring along your own snacks, but no hot food.

I hope to see you there.

Terence Sawyers


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