Film and Architecture - AR821

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2020 to 2021
(version 2)
Autumn 7 15 (7.5) MR H Griffin checkmark-circle


This module reviews the representation of architecture in film through history, by looking at influential cinematic depictions of the built form. With light being such an important factor in both disciplines, the links between the two industries are explored, analysing films from early German expressionist cinema through to present-day utopian/dystopian films. Students will investigate how the cinematic depiction of architecture can alter the character of the built environment and the way in which it is portrayed. This module aims to explore the relationship of architecture to lens, and screen to audience.


This module appears in the following module collections.

Contact hours


Method of assessment

Seminar presentation (50%)
Essay (3,500 words) (50%)

Indicative reading

Lamster, M. (2000). Architecture and Film. New York: Princeton Architectural Press.
Penz, F & Thomas, M. (1997). Cinema & Architecture: Melies, Mallet-Stevens, Multimedia. London: British Film Institute.
Shonfield, K. (2000). Walls Have Feelings: Architecture, Film & the City. London: Routledge.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

8.1 A comprehensive understanding of the relationship of the camera to architecture and the built environment
8.2 An ability to demonstrate through writing and oral presentation a systematic knowledge of the histories and theories of architecture in and of film
8.3 An ability to critically appraise and form considered judgements about the importance of the narrative, symbolism and aesthetic treatment of architecture in film and animation
9.1 An ability to deal with complex issues about the cultural context of film and architecture, making sound judgements and communicate conclusions to a specialist audience in both written and oral presentation.
9.2 An ability to continue to advance knowledge and understanding of the history and theory of film and architecture.


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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