F is for film! Of course it’s also for food, but I thought if I continue banging on about food you’ll think I’m a right porker with no other interests in life but eating. This is to assure you that that is not the case!
I’ve always loved film, be it foreign or British. I find a lot of British films are underrated because they are often overshadowed by (increasingly crap) Hollywood films. That said, I am no film buff. I simply enjoy the art and love that it allows me to wander beyond my own life for two hours at a time. I prefer independent film to big Hollywood films. And for a while I was obsessed with Korean film but soon found that much of the ‘good stuff’ was always either making me cry or was disturbingly violent.
Whilst living in Japan my love of film grew so much that I had this wonderful idea to study Japanese film and its influence on history for my MA postgraduate degree. Perhaps I misinterpreted the course description, as I ended up with a Masters degree in Japanese Studies (which is fine) but with a focus in Media & Film Studies. I ended up studying more about the history of Japanese film and not how Japanese film shaped Japanese history. Right. Well that was a massive fail as I was way in over my head with all the film theory.
I remember getting really excited when I got one of my essays back. At the top of the front page it said 67. Huzzah! I finally did it! It was a massive improvement from the 59 I got prior to this one. But as I flipped through the pages to read the comments, the essay was entirely foreign to me. Then it finally dawned on me that sadly, it wasn’t my essay. Gutted and embarrassed, I had to return the essay the next day. My lecturer apologised for the confusion and explained that she had gotten my essay mixed up and that Mr. 67 would’ve been really depressed if he had gotten my score. Ouch.
But now this is sounding more like ‘f’ is for failure. Which, in the end, I guess you could say that film studies was a failure even though I managed to pass. But that isn’t to say that I didn’t enjoy the course. I spent a large amount of my time at the cinema, my favourite being the Curzon Soho on Shaftesbury Avenue and have fond memories of film marathons at the Raindance Film Festival (which runs from 28 September to 9 October at the Apollo Cinema in London’s Piccadilly Circus this year) and London Korean Film Festival, dabbled in French and German film, etc., so I suppose I succeeded in terms of exposing myself to a vast array of film.