Directing 101: Film as Art & Movies as Entertainment.

Do you want to be an artist and to express yourself through film, be understood by the few (or nobody) and have your films exhibited in museums, art galleries, and cultural centers and events? Or, do you want to be an entertainer and please the crowd, be understood by many, and have your movies exhibited in movie theaters, watched in DVD format, or through an online streaming service like Netflix? Between this two alternatives, one seems to be more logical to you depending on your status. If you don't visit museums, art galleries, cultural centers or go to cultural events, or paint in certain styles (suprematism, impressionism, cubism, geometric abstraction), you may be more interested in filmmaking as entertainment because watching films as art demands a previous cultural capital that is mainly acquired through your family.

The movies as entertainment are related to the film industry, the films as art are related to the artistic production. The film industry demands a massive market, the artistic production is a much more selective field because it demands specialized previous knowledge and focuses on style and form more than on story. Both kind of consumptions demand previous knowledge but, the industrial production reproduces an aesthetic that can be understood by many, therefore, it is seen as an extension of daily life ("popular aesthetic.") Art demands an "aesthetic distance" that requires time to observe, think, remember, and keep a level of indifference.

Brian DePalma director of movies like "Mission: Impossible" (1996), "Femme Fatale" (2002), "Snake Eyes" (1998), "The Untouchables" (1987) and "Scarface" (1983) states:

"I think the problem for the independent director is that he says to himself “Shit! Shit the studios! Shit the public! I’m an artist and what I want is to enjoy myself.” Maybe he can do that, but perhaps no one will want to see his film – and in the American system it’s very difficult to get over that because we live in a world where you have to succeed. People read Variety not the Cahiers du cinéma. That’s the world we live in. How many people are interested in what’s happening in the back of beyond? Everyone says “Pauline Kael gave me a good review, and I couldn’t care less what the population in some God-forsaken place is doing,” but it’s not quite true. I think what really matters is the number of people you want to attract"

BDP: "Yes, but at the same time Hitchcock was a consummate businessman. He’d exploited television before people realized its potential importance and he made a lot of money. As far as I’m concerned the key to the American film industry is its capitalist side. We can admire what the French, the Italians or the Germans are doing, but it’s not us, and I think that when we try to copy them it’s disastrous. Over here we make cars, sewing machines and mixers, and we work and sell on a grand scale. It’s like that and I don’t think we should change."

BDP: "Basically I think that, in spite of everything that has been written about Hitchcock, when he sat down and thought about the film he was going to make, he said to himself “Will it really be interesting? Will it scare them? Am I going to get them?” It’s as if he was saying “Are they going to buy this Ford?” That’s basically how he thought of his films. Critics and university people can say what they like about the Catholic symbolism in his films. What really motivated him was “How can I make ten million dollars with one million?” In my view, that’s the American system. As far as style is concerned, Hitchcock never lost sight of the ultimate object of the film. I put all my craziest ideas about style into Carrie, but I never forgot that it was about a girl who absolutely hated her fellow pupils and killed everybody. That was what drove the film."

If you want to make movies, direct them, understanding "film as art and movies as entertainment" is a useful tool to design the path you want to develop. As an entertainer or an artist you want to understand the limits of what you are doing and avoid any sense of guilt or remorse. For $10, in two hours, you will learn the basic concepts that you can use to define your situation and basic examples of film as art and movies as entertainment.

Acquiring concepts that allow you to think a situation is very helpful. My approach is based on the writings of the French sociologist Pierre Bourdieu but, also, in my research about the filmmaker's reputations:

So, here there are some basic topics we will develop:

1) What is Art & Legitimate Taste?
2) Film as Art: Andy Warhol, Alain Resnais, Yasujiro Ozu. Parametric Narration-Noël Burch.
3) Film as Entertainment: The U.S. Film Industry.

Teacher's Bio: I underwent a doctoral program in the History of Art at UNMSM and I'm working on my doctoral thesis about filmmaking style. I got a Master's and a Bachelor's degree in Social Communication from UNMSM. I have given conferences at Peruvian universities about "Hollywood and the U.S. Intelligence Community", "Reputation of Three Filmmakers: Alfred Hitchcock, Walt Disney, and Leonidas Zegarra", "Cinema: Subliminal Contents." AI taught the courses "Journalism & Disinformation" and "Thesis Workshop" at UPC and "Director Workshop" at UNMSM. In 2010, I participated in the making of "María y los niños pobres", an artisanal movie shot in La Paz (Bolivia), edited in Lima (Peru), and exhibited in Puno and Juli (Peru), and La Paz (Bolivia), and later in 2017 at the Cine Club of the National Library of Peru.
Style of Offering : 2-hour lecture with examples (only one session), you can ask questions and I can ask questions to understand what interests you have.
Max Number of Attendees: 1
Date and Time : To be coordinated with the person interested. My time is PET (Peru Time) UTC-5.
Signup Deadline: 48 Hours in Advance