France brings in film school for les enfants

Watching classics like ‘Citizen Kane’ will help pupils understand real-life power struggles

All secondary schools in France have been ordered to screen classic films – from Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane to François Truffaut’s Les Quatre Cent Coups (The 400 Blows) – in a bid to expand children’s knowledge of the so-called “septième art” (seventh art). The initiative, Cinélycée, will launch in September. A member of staff from each school will sign up to be the resident “culture tsar” – a position for which they will be paid extra – and will sit alongside five students on a mini film council. It is part of a wider reform of the secondary school system promoted last year by President Nicolas Sarkozy, who believes France’s rich cinematic heritage is being sidelined by modern, celebrity-heavy fare. Under the plans, unveiled Tuesday, each school will have its own club with a repertoire of 200 films. They will include masterpieces from the silent movie era, as well as British, Italian, American and Asian films, and such homegrown chef d’oeuvres as Marcel Carné’s Les Enfants du Paradis and Jean Renoir’s La Grande Illusion. All the films in the school archive are pre-1980 and are intended to be watched alongside current releases. Schools will be expected to screen films – either streamed live or downloaded – several times a month in their original languages with subtitles. In a bid to stop piracy, only 20 films will be on offer each month. For Frédéric Mitterrand, the minister for culture, screening film classics in the classroom is not just about developing pupils’ cinematic knowledge but also educating them about the reality of the 21st century, by exposing them to a whole range of human emotion

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/france-brings-in-film-school-for-iles-enfantsi-1976394.html

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One thought on “France brings in film school for les enfants

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