Symbiosis International University Symbiosis School for Liberal Arts

The Cinematic Apparatus

Faculty Course Type Credits Prerequisites Semester
Gayatri Chatterjee Minor 4 Film Studies Minor 4

 Brief Overview 

This paper is devoted to the technology that produces films. The students learn the history of the development of technology that led to the invention of this 7th Art.

They learn the discovery of the camera obscura.
They learn the development of the camera—from to the still camera to the motion pictures camera.

They learn about the camera lens. Here they connect with the previous topic of Realism. They also learn briefly the history of film raw stock.

All this is learnt through practical exercises. They learn about B&W and colour films and their special aesthetics. Sound is an important element of Cinema. They learn the history of sound.

The students understand that the Cinematic Apparatus means all the stages of the cinema: production; distribution; and production. The concept of Audience Reception is introduced here. Students learn the three As: Artist; Art work; audience. 

 Course Objectives 

  • The objective of this paper is to make students to interpret how technology is connected with ideology, value, meaning and feeling of cinema.
  • To illustrate all the different technology involved so that their understanding of cinema does not only involve understanding cinema as a mode of story-telling.
  • To interpret film form and style.
  • To fully apply to what degree lens and composition are behind the Reality factor of a film.
  • To interpret to what extent film distribution system is behind the perceived success of a film—and to what extent all this is manipulated.  

 Teaching Methodology 

  • Students are made to watch movies in class of different genres. Interactive class discussions after every Film.
  • Students learn how film images are formed through photographs, moving pictures, video clips, story boards etc.
  • Students learn to observe the impressions films make on them and learn to write down these impressions.
  • Evaluations are conducted throughout the semester to ensure that the students’ outcomes are appraised.


Students are expected to –

  • Complete all required reading for each scheduled class as per the course outline,
  • Actively participate in class activities and discussions, and
  • Complete all evaluative processes for successful course completion!