Course Description

Film is both a powerful communication medium and an art form. The Diploma Programme film course aims to develop students’ skills so that they become adept in both interpreting and making film texts.

Through the study and analysis of film texts and exercises in film-making, the Diploma Programme film course explores film history, theory and socio-economic background. The course develops students’ critical abilities, enabling them to appreciate the multiplicity of cultural and historical perspectives in film. To achieve an international understanding within the world of film, students are taught to consider film texts, theories and ideas from the points of view of different individuals, nations and cultures.

The IB film course emphasizes the importance of working individually and as a member of a group. Students are encouraged to develop the professional and technical skills (including organizational skills) needed to express themselves creatively in film.

At the core of the IB film course lies a concern with clarity of understanding, critical thinking, reflective analysis, effective involvement and imaginative synthesis that is achieved through practical engagement in the art and craft of film.

Course Aims

The film course at SL and HL aims to develop in students the skills necessary to achieve creative and critical independence in their knowledge, experience and enjoyment of film.

The aims are to promote:

  • An appreciation and understanding of film as a complex art form
  • An ability to formulate stories and ideas in film terms
  • The practical and technical skills of production
  • Critical evaluation of film productions by the student and by others
  • A knowledge of film-making traditions in more than one country.

Syllabus Components

Part 1: Textual analysis

This part of the course involves the detailed study of film sequences. Students should move between close textual analysis of specific scenes and analysis of films as a whole, contextualizing meanings within a larger framework.

Part 2: Film theory and history

This section involves the study of films and film-making traditions from more than one country. Students are expected to learn about films from more than one country to enhance their understanding of films familiar to them and also of films from other countries that may be less familiar to them.

Part 3: Creative process - techniques and organization of production

Part three focuses on the development of creative, analytical and production skills within film-making. Students will have the opportunity to develop skills in film production.

Assessment Objectives

Having followed the film course at SL or HL, students are expected to demonstrate:

  • An understanding of the variety of ways in which film creates meaning
  • An understanding and effective use of appropriate film language
  • Originality and creativity in developing an idea through the various stages of film-making, from conception to finished production
  • Technical skills and an appropriate use of available technology
  • The ability to draw together knowledge, skills, research and experience, and apply them analytically to evaluate film texts
  • A critical understanding of the historical, theoretical, socio-cultural, economic and institutional contexts of film in more than one country
  • The ability to research, plan and organize working processes
  • The ability to reflect upon and evaluate film production processes

Assessment Component

External assessment: 50%

Independent study: Rationale, script and list of sources for a short documentary production on an aspect of film theory and/or film history. The chosen films must originate from more than one country. (25%).

Oral Presentation: An oral presentation of a detailed critical analysis of a continuous extract from a prescribed film (25%).

Internal assessment: 50%

Production Portfolio : This component is internally assessed by the teacher and externally moderated by the IB at the end of the course (50%).