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Palmer's Pix presents: How to Watch a Movie

These six sessions have been created by our local experts and Boe favorites to increase your knowledge and enjoyment of the art of film. Covering many topic areas of filmmaking, ranging from the highly theoretical to the clearly concrete mechanical aspects, our lecturers will use examples from films, both familiar and obscure, to give you the tools to discuss the art form, enhancing your appreciation of the great movies shown at The Boe and elsewhere.

Basics of Film Theory: Thinking Critically About Film


with Jack Hanley 
Oct 8 - 7:00
Cinema is not merely entertainment- it's perhaps the highest and most dominant art form of our time. Do you ever finish a film and ask, "What did I just see?" or "What was that really about?"
For anyone passionate about film's theories, images, and how to interpret and talk about them - this is the ideal course! We will embark on an interactive journey through the history of film, stopping to examine the major cinematic movements and critical theories that shape how we view, analyze, and ultimately critique cinema itself.
By journey's end you will be intimately acquainted with the basic vocabulary of film studies and be able to employ that language to articulate your analysis, critical interpretation, and informed argumentation about cinema- and gain a heightened appreciation of film both as an art form and a transcendent experience.
Jack Hanley 
Anyone who has been fortunate enough to take part in a talk back with Jack knows that his knowledge base is deep and wide, his presentations direct, preciese, and interactive. An author, critic, and lecturer, he is well-versed in the fields of Film History and Film Criticism, Folklore, Culture and Media Studies, English and American Romanticism, and Eastern European History. He is host, programmer, and moderator for the Crested Butte Film Festival and founder and host of several Boulder film series including The Clandestine Campus Cinema Society (CU Boulder), the Bloody Celluloid Film Series, and the Central and East European Film Festival. He currently helms the award-winning website Mile High Cinema and his upcoming cinema podcast will be available on ITunes in December 2018.


How Stories Are Told 


with Richard Fleming
Oct 29 - 7:00
Ever get to the end of movie and wonder, "What was that really about?" You followed the plot, but couldn't fully understand what the filmmaker was trying to say. In this 2-hour session, you will get an inside look at how stories are told; understand why some great premises just flop; and through a consistent framework, identify key elements of filmmaking technique that inform and motivate a story forward. What you learn in this session will even help improve your own ability to tell stories.
Richard Fleming
Richard Fleming is a story consultant, logician, speaker, and film director. His companies, Sage Media and Sage Academy, blend neuroscience with visual art to make learning experiences that leverage video to produce consistent, positive, and measurable behaviour change. His films are used by companies like Microsoft, Hershey, Bechtel, GP Strategies, and Wilson Learning to produce positive change in the lives of their staff.


Fundamentals of the Cinematographic Image


with Cynthia Stephens
Nov 19 - 7:00
Images, like words in novels, are the basic components of storytelling in film. Over time, cinematographers have developed tools to craft stories that have an emotional impact other art forms cannot hope to emulate.  The stories engage viewers on conscious and unconscious levels.  This session will help learners identify different shots and angles and understand how directorial choices around composition within the frame, lighting, lenses, filters, focus, color, movements of characters and camera, and mise-en-scene function as significantly as dialog to advance the narrative. These elements accomplish a number of dramatic goals including underscoring theme, developing character, establishing mood, and connecting setting to dramatic action.  Deconstructing how cinematic worlds are created brings those who consume films greater satisfaction and appreciation for movies as an art form with the power to entertain, instruct, motivate, change, and inspire.
Cynthia Stephens 
Cynthia is a writer-producer and a communications strategist specializing in marketing, training, and advertising. She has worked for large, mid-sized and small corporations, as well as nonprofits. She has taught courses in documentary film, film history, and writing for film, radio and television. She also worked to promote film in Florida and served on Florida Communications Task Force.

How Editing Impacts Our Sense of Time and Meaning


with Jim Palmer
Dec 17 - 7:00
Whether a movie is shot in studio or on location, usually both, the final form of the work is created in the editing room (okay, computer room). Often the editor and director are working side by side and the editing is influencing everything from story continuity, rhythm & pacing, tone & atmosphere, transitions of time and space, to . . . well, EVERYTHING. Think the chase in The French Connection or 2001: A Space Odyssey and the cut that turns the ape/man's weapon (bone) into a space ship. Whether invisible or in-your-face, editing is the culmination of this complex art.
Jim Palmer
Jim Palmer, CU Professor Emeritus, is the co-author of The Films of Joseph Losey (with Michael Riley, Cambridge University Press, 1993), and a contributing editor to Literature/Film Quarterly. Palmer is the recipient of many teaching awards, including the Presidential Teaching Scholar Award, the Teacher of the Year Award, and the Boulder Faculty Assembly Service Award. He has been the Film Studies Program Director, as well as Acting Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs. His work has appeared in Literature/Film Quarterly, and Film Heritage among other journals. Professor Palmer has lectured extensively throughout the state and the nation on film, literature, and psychology.

Me-Dia: How Movies Help Us Watch Ourselves


with Mathew Klickstein
Jan 21 - 7:00
Why do we make movies? Why do we watch movies?   
Perhaps it is that cinema can be a means of better understanding the world around us; places we may never experience in person, cultures that have long passed or that exist only in our (often prescient) imagination envisioning the future ahead.  
The ME-DIA seminar will grant the curious cineaste and novice alike an inward glimpse into how this 130-year-old artform has become a brilliantly prismatic lens that connects us so intimately with one another and ourselves. 
Mathew Klickstein
Mathew Klickstein is a local journalist, author and filmmaker whose most notable works include the book SLIMED! An Oral History of Nickelodeon's Golden Age and On Your Marc, a new documentary about 80s/90s television icon Marc Summers. He has contributed in the past to such publications as Wired, New York Daily News and popular comedy website Splitsider. His new book, Springfield Confidential: Jokes, Secrets and Outright Lies from a Lifetime Writing The Simpsons, has been out since June, and was co-written with the series' longest-running writer/producer, Mike Reiss.


Interuptus: Bird Man - SOLD OUT

Feb 18 - 7:00
All of the lecturers will be at this screening, occasionally stopping the movie to point out aspects which reinforce the concepts learned in the individual sessions. The audience will not be allowed to interupt the film, as that would take too long.

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Special thanks to our
Series Sponsor

Janet Leap, 
Re/Max of Boulder