Film grammar

'Rear Window' Seminar – Dr Michael Kitson

It’s always a joy to watch Michael elucidate the hidden gems of meaning lurking beneath the surface of a classic film. If you saw his analysis of The Road Warrior and the Dog, you’ll already know a Rear Window lecture from Kitson is not one to miss.
— Brett Stanning, Teacher of screenwriting RMIT University

I'm very excited about this event in March. I'll be on the door and looking after the morning and afternoon tea – which will be decadent or healthy, depending on your preference.

The seminar will be delivered by Dr Michael Kitson. His knowledge of this film is extensive. (Full disclosure, I married him for his knowledge of literature and film.) The resources are brilliant. The seminar is targeted at teachers, but would be perfect for Year 12 students. If you're bringing a group, contact me via the website for a discount. 

And if you don't live in Ballarat, it's only a short drive from the city. 


In this one-day seminar, academic and film commentator, Dr Michael Kitson will tackle the issues of character, story and theme as he examines Alfred Hitchcock’s spectacular widescreen entertainment, Rear Window. Dr Kitson will give you the tools to wake up from the dream and see the way meaning is made, how character is created, and reality conjured.

Is film really a ‘text’? What is this ’grammar’ in film? Given there’s an original short story, then a screenwriter and screenplay, a film director and a troupe of actors – even an editor, just who is the definitive ‘author’ in whom we can ascribe an authorial intent? Is ‘Hitchcock’ a genre unto himself?

Resources provided on the day: Woolrich’s short story, Hayes and Hitchcock’s screenplay, the official Rear Window DVD, as well as original notes covering a guide to the grammar of film, explication and analysis of ten key scenes, a bank of key quotations and a bibliography of further resources and reading.

This PD is relevant to all educators teaching film as text, from middle grade to VCE.

Date: March 10, 2018
Venue: Ballarat Mechanics’ Institute, The Humffray Room, 117 Sturt Street Ballarat
Cost: $150
Time: 9.00 a.m. Registration, 9.30 start, 4.30 finish
Included: Morning and afternoon tea


Dr Michael Kitson is trained in the production of film and TV, he worked as a location sound recordist and documentary researcher, studied cinema journalism at the British Film Institute and has been writing on film for over twenty years (Cinema Papers, IF, Metro, ASE, Limelight). He has lectured in literature, creative and screen writing at the University of Melbourne, Swinburne, UWS, Melbourne Polytechnic, Victoria University and Federation University. He holds a PhD UWS, MA in Communications RMIT, MA Creative Writing (hons) University of Melbourne, BA Monash University and supervises and assesses postgraduate and doctoral candidates. His short fiction has been anthologised.

Students love Michael’s lectures and classes. His passion for his subject shines through and engages everyone.
— Dr Sherryl Clark, Victoria University