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French Language through Films (LL298)

This module will not be offered in 2020/21. For information on an alternative Level 6 module running in 2020/21 - LL251 French for Business 2 - please see this page:



Prerequisite: Prior knowledge of French

  • successful completion of Language Centre level 5 equivalent module
  • or a B2.2 level of the CEFR (Common European Framework of reference for Languages)
  • or a good A level or equivalent + 1 year of further study
  • or equivalent

This module is the equivalent of a level 6 module in French at the Language Centre. This module is designed to help students achieve a high level of language proficiency in French and to maximise their experience of the language. It is structured around viewing and discussing feature-length films in French to foster a better understanding of French-speaking societies and to explore contemporary issues and the linguistic variants portrayed in the films.

Successful completion of Film qualifies students to progress to French language through Translation.

Main Objectives:

To develop listening skills by being exposed to a variety of accents/registers/contexts from the French- speaking world at native speed. To enhance cultural awareness. To build critical analytical skills. To work towards C1.1 of the Common European Framework of Reference


15 CREDITS, also available for 12 CREDITS.


One 2-hour language class each week for 9 weeks (including written examination).

Students are reminded that 1 credit = 10 hours of study, therefore the minimum expected amount of study is 120 hours. A substantial amount of independent study is therefore required. Students can make use of Moodle to facilitate this.


Mélanie Jolivet-Bâlon

Course Text

No textbook is required. Selected texts will be provided.

The films studied will be made available to students in Moodle.

Course Description

The module is:

  • is taught entirely in French.
  • is structured around watching a weekly film in French.
  • requires students to write a weekly essay/"fiche de film" and to actively participate in class discussions.
  • draws on aural and written documents such as reports, interviews, documentaries, articles, reviews, forums, etc., about topics explored or inspired by the films.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the module, students will be able to:

  • Understand speech even when it is not clearly structured and explicit.
  • Demonstrate an extended lexical, grammatical and syntactical knowledge of French.
  • Demonstrate a high level of language proficiency by conversing more fluently and spontaneously in French.
  • Identify, synthesise and present in French core and complex arguments developed in films, texts and discussions.
  • Demonstrate a higher degree of intercultural awareness such as the changing social environment and the cultural and linguistic diversity in the French-speaking world.

Indicative list of films

  • Maurice Pialat "L'enfance nue"
  • Claire Denis "Chocolat"
  • Jean-Pierre Melville "Le silence de la mer"
  • Laurent Cantet "Ressources humaines"
  • Etienne Chatiliez "La vie est un long fleuve tranquille"
  • Laurent Tirard "Molière"

Subject specific skills

  • Strategies for understanding gist and specific information
  • Strategies to communicate effectively both in writing and orally in French.
  • Intercultural competence
  • Using appropriate resources (linguistic or technological) to produce accurate written assignments.

Transferable skills

  • Intellectual skills: critical thinking, analysis, synthesis
  • Communication skills: writing and oral presentation, defending one’s point of view
  • Organisational skills: independent work, time management
  • Interpersonal skills: flexibility, adaptability and the ability to work with others