Film Club at North Cross School
By Danny Phung '22
Film study club at Northcross is slowly opened again for students coming back to school.
French Teacher, Chris Brandon the founder of the Film Club has this to say about the reason for making this club. “I created the club to share my interest in film studies with students, and to give them another window into the arts.”
When asked about the movie that has impacted him the most, Mr. Brandon has a hard time choosing one.“This is a tough question! Many different films have impacted me personally during different parts of my life. Carl Theodor Dryer's 1928 film The Passion of Joan of Arc, a silent film, changed the way I understood what visual acting can achieve. Marcel Carné's film Children of Paradise (made during war conditions from 1943-1945) showed me the beauty of physical acting--and I think we all fell in love with the tragic mime Frédérick. But a movie like George Lucas' original Star Wars fired my imagination as a kid, making me dream of Jedi and spaceships. One of my favorite films to teach is Michael Curtiz's 1942 film Casablanca because it combines so much: adventure story, war story, refugee story, love story and is very artistic with its cinematography. “
Mr. Brandon thinks that movies can be used as a tool for education. “Movies can definitely be used for education. In the same way that visual arts, performing arts, and literature help us understand what it means to be human, often showing us experiences that are different from our own, film borrows from all of these art forms. Humans have always told stories, and some of the earliest and oldest forms of teaching are through storytelling.” he said.
For Mr. Brandon, his favorite activity in the club is listening to students about the movie. “Honestly, my favorite part is hearing what students think and how they react to what they see.”
The most memorable moment that he had in the club is the first of the Club.”I think my favorite memorable moment in the club was the first day when we talked about film scores and music and we listened to different famous scores and tried to decide what emotion was being conveyed. It was super fun!” Mr.Brandon replied.
Club member, freshman Isabella Onufer decides to join the club because she likes movies. “I chose to enter the club originally because I was bored and happened to be interested in movies .Once I got to know the class, teacher, and students, it turned into an extracurricular activity I am constantly looking forward to.”
Isabella had learned alot from the club, especially about diction movies. “I have learned a lot from this club. In my opinion the most interesting things I've learned are directing and filming techniques. For example, how lighting plays a role in how the movie "feels" (Example: film noir; dark lighting, heavy shadows. Generally gives the movie a mysterious and dark feeling). Or how certain props in the movie are set up to make a room feel clustered or too big. “ Isabella said.“My favourite is how perspective is used. Have you ever seen Jurassic Park? If not, then you should (it's amazing), but there's a particular scene where the group of people look up and see this huge dinosaur. The way the camera is positioned makes the human seen inconsequential and tiny.”
When asked about her favorite movie, she also has a hard time picking one. “ Let me just say this: having one favourite movie is extremely difficult. For example, some movies are too different, but you like them both (romance and horror). But my favourite types of movies are about time, or the ones that make you think about the reality you live in. The Butterfly Effect, Interstellar, The Matrix, Inception, and Terminator are some of my favourite movies.”
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