Review Writing and Filmmaking in Into Film Clubs

05 May 2021 in Into Film Club of the Month

3 mins
Image for April 21 FCOTM article
Image for April 21 FCOTM article

Rena Papadopoulos is an English teacher at Abingdon School, in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, and has been running her school's Into Film Club since 2019. We spoke to Rena about how her club has grown over the years and the positive effect teaching with film has had on her members.

What inspired you to start your Into Film Club?

I'd heard of the website, and thought the students would enjoy it. At first it was a very small club, but over time some members started to bring their friends along, and it's grown from there.

What do you enjoy about running an Into Film Club?

I enjoy discussing the films with the club members, and also enjoy it when they discover a new film or come to appreciate a classic.

How has the way you run your Into Film Club changed this past year?

We switched to online recommendations during the lockdown, and students could add their reviews [to the website] if they managed to watch the films. Now that we're back at school, one year group is in the classroom, while others join via Zoom.

Have you seen any positive changes in your club members since they joined?

I have realised members really enjoy some time at school when they can sit back and just enjoy a film, then be able to discuss it afterwards with their friends. It's given the more successful reviewers confidence, and some students have kept up with the club since it started, so I think it's helping to foster a love of film and widen their range of experiences with film.

Your club members have had some great Review 500 winning reviews. Do you have any review writing tips to share?

I think the main advice would be to get students to go into some detail about what they liked, or if they didn't like it, to explain why they didn't take to the film. Get them to try and show that they've thought about how the film is put together.

Have you used film to help with your teaching?

As an English teacher, film has always been a useful tool. I also think there's a lot of potential in students making their own short films.

Which films have gone down well at your Into Film Club?

My club members enjoy action packed films - the Terminator films were a hit, along with The Matrix. They have enjoyed other classic films as well, such as Rain Man and Casablanca.

What are your plans for the future with your Into Film Club?

I found out recently that a couple of club members had started making their own films and submitting them to Into Film's Film of the Month competition without my knowledge! I think this is great and is something we could look into more.

Is there any advice you would give to new Into Film Club leaders?

Pick films you will all enjoy and try to encourage students to start expressing their opinions in writing.

This Article is part of: Into Film Club of the Month

Each month we celebrate one Into Film Club's achievements and talk to the club leader about how they approach their sessions.

View other Articles in this column

You may also be interested in...

Viewing 4 of 4 related items.

Into Film Clubs

Into Film Clubs

Find out everything you need to know about starting an Into Film Club.

News details

Want to write for us?

Get in touch with your article ideas for the News and Views section.