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Thomas Elsaesser

The University of Amsterdam is a very famous university; it is all the more famous because it has the services of a veteran in Thomas Elsaesser. His research project called “Cinema Europe” was a grand success; his extensive research paid a very rich reward. Several books were published based on his research, the books were mainly on European cinema and the crux of European cinema. Thomas Elsaesser is the first name that comes to mind when international film studies is being talked about. His essays and books on film theory have been very widely read, film theory is mainly about the relationship of a movie with reality. Film theory is also very closely related to critical theory. How a particular film impacts the society is also studied under film theory. Film theory is often confused with film criticism; both these terms have very different meaning and should not be confused. How a movie impacts our body and senses is also very important to understand, for instance a movie portraying violence might motivate the people to commit violent acts, in some cases even murders. Cinema can also be seen as a window and frame, the director has the liberty of showing what he wants to, in other words it is an outlet for him to put across his feelings and his ideas.

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There are several important theories that must be studied under film studies, one such theory is constructivism. This theory originated in Russia from the year 1919 onwards, this theory was deadly against the idea of “art for art’s sake”. The motifs or themes used under this theory are even used these days by different directors. This theory was replaced by Socialist realism.

There are some really popular names in the film industry, one such name is Alfred Hitchcock. He was an English filmmaker and he also produced movies. Suspense and psychological thrillers were his forte and he invented several techniques under these genres. He made silent films which were really appreciated by the audience; even early talkies made by him were very well received by the audience. He maximized fear and anxiety; he used film editing techniques that were never seen before. With the help of these techniques he used to convey what the characters had to convey to the audience. His career was an illustrious one which spanned well over six decades. During his reign he produced way over fifty movies. Vertigo made by him was an instant hit, he made many more thrillers and the techniques used in these movies were never seen before.

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Frank Capra is another name that comes to mind when film studies is being talked about. It happened one night, lost horizon are some of the hits made by Frank Capra. He was a prop man in silent films, this was hoe he began his career but he was a quick learner and leaner much quicker than his other peers. He remains one of the finest filmmakers of the 1930s and the 1940s. Thomas Elsaesser’s research covers some of the finest filmmakers, German film industry is his expertise and he has written and research extensively on the same.

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