Are you a fan of the Criterion Collection? Have you ever read even mere segments of David Bordwell’s and Kristin Thompson’s exhaustively researched, massively elucidating and informative text, Film Art: An Introduction? No matter what your answers are to either of these questions, the only thing that truly matters is whether or not you have a serious, passionate, vested interest in cinema as an artistic medium, and if your response to that is yes, then it’s well worth your time to head on over to Criterion’s website and check out this posting from yesterday.
Criterion’s team has teamed up with Bordwell and Thompson in time for the upcoming release of Film Art‘s tenth anniversary edition. Acknowledging that cinematic still frames can only let us grasp the effects of filmmaking techniques so much, the partnership between the three parties has yielded the production of a series of online videos using films from the Criterion Collection as examples of the lessons taught by Film Art.
The first example– Agnès Varda’s 1985 film Vagabond— is already up for viewing, and can be seen both in the announcement post linked in the first paragraph and on Mr. Bordwell’s own site here. Pretty cool, as far as I’m concerned; the more resources available to teach film lovers both new to the medium and well-versed in its particulars about cinematic history and language, the better.