Film & Architecture - ARCH8610

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2023 to 2024
Combined Autumn and Spring Terms 7 30 (15) Howard 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. These relationships are then further explored and realised through the production of a film project.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 80 hours
Private study hours: 220 hours
Total study hours: 300 hours

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods

Seminar presentation (25%)
Essay / Video Essay (3,500 words) (25%)
Film Project (50%)

Reassessment methods

Like for like with the following clarification:
Video Presentation with associated notes on topic replacing seminar presentation (25%)

Indicative reading

Indicative Reading List

Cairns, G. (2013) The Architecture of the Screen. Bristol: Intellect.
Doughty, R. & Ehterington-Wright, C (2017) Understanding Film Theory. London: Palgrave
Jago, M (2019) Adobe Premiere Pro CC. San Jose: Adobe Press
Lamster, M. (2000). Architecture and Film. New York: Princeton Architectural Press.
Neumann, D. (1996) Film Architecture: from Metropolis to Blade Runner. Munich: Prestel
Penz, F & Thomas, M. (1997). Cinema & Architecture: Melies, Mallet-Stevens, Multimedia. London: British Film Institute.
Tobe, R. (2018) Film, Architecture and Spatial Imagination. Abingdon: Routledge

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1. A comprehensive understanding of the relationship of the camera to architecture and the built environment, and of the key elements of film narrative and style, and the
key processes involved in film and video production.
2. An ability to demonstrate through writing and oral presentation a systematic knowledge of the histories and theories of architecture in and of film
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
4. Be able to relate their work in other modules within the broader context of contemporary filmmaking theories and practices across pre-production, production, and post-
5. Be technically competent in the use of appropriate video production technologies and techniques.

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

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
through a variety of communication methods.
2 An ability to continue to advance knowledge and understanding of the history and theory of film and architecture.
3. Utilise time management skills to meet tight deadlines.
4. Communicate information effectively through audio-visual means.
5. Have the ability to reflect upon their work in a critical and analytical manner.


  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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