00354 - Filmology

Course Unit Page

  • Teacher Michele Canosa

  • Credits 12

  • SSD L-ART/06

  • Teaching Mode Traditional lectures

  • Language Italian

  • Course Timetable from Oct 01, 2018 to Dec 04, 2018

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course students will:

- acquire, according to the doctrine, the double character of the film: as "material object" (the film) and as "image" (on screen);

- know the fundamentals of material history and cinematographic techniques, with particular reference to silent films;

- know the process of film decay and its reasons (physical-chemical, economical, historical);

- acquire the basics of the historical-philological investigation of the film representation.


Course contents

I.1. Characters of film representation (1895-1910): the program.


I.1.1. Edison, Lumière, Méliès, Segundo de Chomón.

I.1.2. The origins of Italian cinema


I.2. Characters in the cinematic representation (1911-1918): affirmation of the full-length film.


I.3 Character of the film representation (1920s / 1930s): introduction of sound cinema.


II.1 Film heritage and film dispersion: outline


II.2 Silent cinema: major materials and techniques.


II.3 Silent cinema: media and formats of the film.


III.1 The color in silent cinema: technical and aesthetic aspects

III.2 Coloring procedures: by hand, dyeing, toning, etching, pochoir (or stencil)

III.3 Other coloring procedures.






A text at your choice among the 4 bibliographic sections.


Section I:

Silvio Alovisio, Giulia Carluccio, Introduzione al cinema muto italiano, Torino, UTET, 2014.


Section II:

Paolo Cherchi Usai, Una passione infiammabile. Guida allo studio del cinema muto, Torino, UTET, 1991.



Carlo Montanaro, Dall'argento al pixel. Storia della tecnica del cinema, Recco (GE), Le Mani, 2005.



Giovanna Fossati, From Grain to pixel. The Archivial Life of Film in Transition, Amsterdam, Amsterdam University Press, 2009 [testo in inglese]-


Section III:

Federico Pierotti, La seduzione dello spettro. Storia e cultura del colore nel cinema, Recco (GE), Le Mani, 2012.


Section IV:

A. Costa, Viaggio sulla luna / Voyage dans la lune (Georges Méliès, 1902), Milano-Udine, Mimesis, 2013.


All texts are available at the Library of the Department of Arts (Music and Entertainment, Via Barberia 4).



Teaching methods


Assessment methods

The final examination will be an interview.


The final examination will be focused on the three parts of the course, with particular reference to the first part of the history of Italian cinema ("Italian silent cinema").

It will be assessed as excellent the performance of those students achieving 1) Effective and secure acquisition of the notions of the constituent elements of the film device and its material components; 2) A full knowledge of one of the topics discussed in the course (with particular attention to the colour theme in silent film, considering the techniques, procedures and aesthetic outcomes); 3) the intelligence of "primitive" modes of film representation; 4) critical ability to study the distinctive characters of the early years of cinema; 5) analytical skills in the film examination of the work of "pioneers".


It will be assessed as good, discrete or sufficient the performance of those students showing a basic knowledge of the subject and the relevant bibliography. It will be assessed as negative the performance of those students showing not to have acquired a basic knowledge of cinema history (specifically: Italian silent cinema); or in the case of lack of the basics notions dealt with in the course; or in case of half-hearted study of the bibliography; or, finally, in case of inadequate verbal exposition (considering the language or arguments),


At the examination, students may submit an essay ("tesina"). The topic shall be consistent with the topics dealt with in the course and agreed in time with the teacher.


Attention: the essay is optional and does not replace the interview but it will be considered for the final evaluation of the students and, if worthy, will favor excellence marks. As regards the essay, they will be appreciated the originality of the subject, the mastery of the sources, the methodological reliability and the arguing ability; same value will be given to the correctness of the exhibition form, the notes and the bibliography.


Teaching tools

Film's screening.

Office hours

See the website of Michele Canosa