Tips for Choosing and Succeeding in the Film-Audiovisual Major

If you are in the Terminale class and majoring in Film-Audiovisual, then in March (May 2022) you will take the test you have been preparing for since the Première class. The 4-hour written test requires your culture and your background in cinematic practice. As for the modalities of the test, in the first part you will accurately and reasonably analyze an excerpt of no more than 4 minutes from one of the works registered in the program (marked with 10 points). The second part of the test offers a choice of two subjects from two exercises: a creative subject and a subject for reflection.

oral part The test includes: a presentation of the project (10 minutes), an analytical question (10 minutes) and an interview with the jury.

Pierre-Yves Runfola and Antoine D’Avout, film teachers at the International Lycée Valbonne (Alpes-Maritimes), will tell you about their test methods!

Why Choose a CAV Undergraduate Degree?

Pierre-Yves Ranfola

The film and audiovisual specialty of education promises to be film culture teaching you all the tools of film analysis. It is also about learning at a practical level, since the specialty offers introduction to filmmaking.
Moreover, Pierre-Yves Runfola explains that “in the 21st century it is important to follow a course that is directly or indirectly related to the skill of analysis, image building. Since students themselves are the primary creators and consumers of these images, it is important learn to decipher images that surround or even overwhelm them. Antoine D’Avout specifies that: “the choice of a film and audiovisual specialty must be carried out within the framework of a professional project or a specific project of higher education. Often these are students who are tempted by a literary and artistic education, a career in film, a career in the audiovisual sector, or sectors such as communication, writing….”

Two professors agree that this specialty gives a huge open-mindedness. The variety of work on the program, which is, in fact, cultural enrichment mandatory for students.

What qualities are needed to study and enter the CAV specialty?

Antoine D’Avu

Two formal teachers: “You must be literary! ». Antoine D’Avout admits that there is “an initial misunderstanding of the fact that high school students believe that the major in cinema excludes dissertations. They imagine that it is enough to have imagination, to be creative. They are on the wrong track. The specialty of cinema requires a perfect writing skill. The job of film analysis is to apply tools that then need to be shaped. After all, it is very much like a literary text commentary. In fact, we work on works like on books! »

In order to study and succeed in the film-audiovisual specialty, you certainly need a taste for cinema, but also foraesthetic, creativity And reflection.

Pierre-Yves Ranfola, for his part, stands for balance : “You must be as comfortable in writing as you are in speaking.” And he adds that ” curiosity is necessary because the program highlights works that are not relevant, and especially for high school students, except Ready first player Spielberg (2018), the rest appeal to a different cinephilia. You also need a broad spirit of openness. It’s more than being a jack-of-all-trades and also having an artistic streak.”

How do I pass the written test in Film and Audiovisual?

This may seem obvious, but in order to get a good grade in writing, you need to know works at your fingertips. To do this, educators are advised to watch them 3, 4 or even 5 times in order to absorb the maximum. Antoine D’Avout, who is more responsible for the written part of the test, explains: “In fact, the subject of reflection requires specific hints one of the three films included in the limited program. Therefore, students should be able to accurately quote the film: talk about diegesis, aesthetics, sound, image. Unlike text, which can be quoted to hint at what’s going on in the movie, explanations need to be very specific. To do this, students will have to use precise vocabulary and, above all, take the time to explain things. It is also important to read various texts about the works and directors of the program: critical works, film history, aesthetics. All this gives food for thought.

For film analysis of a 4-minute excerpt, it is obligatory organize your thinking because the candidates have to talk about the sound, the picture, the camera movements, what it says, and they only have one hour and thirty minutes. »

Do not be bored

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What makes a good copy in an audiovisual film?

As we have said, a film-audiovisual dissertation is a literary exercise. Antoine D’Avout, having completed university studies in film and audiovisual art, reveals the key elements that make up a good copy: “It is important for the subject of reflection to understand the question posed and be able to formulate a problemas in a literary or philosophical dissertation. You must be able structure your homework to answer the question posed. The latter is framed by areas of work that will need to be responded to in accordance with the axes being studied. For example: a film by Agnès Varda, Cleo 5 to 7 consolidates during the New wave; one can imagine a typical question: Is this a New Wave film? Students will be able to say that it is a film with characteristics in common with New Wave, but not only because it has its own originality, its own strangeness… More generally, a good copy is a copy that thought is organized and in which we feel that writing is smooth. Finally, special attention is paid the quality of the examples used “.

Any tips on how to learn to speak?

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The oral test of film and audiovisual specialty education is mainly based on short film presentation spent in the team during the year Terminale. Professor and also director Pierre-Yves Runfola advises you about this part of the test: “For oral you must show that a person is confident in his creation, even if it’s not. It’s easier to defend what you believe in than walk away broken from the start. I often tell my students: “During the oral test, you need to remember the color of the examiner’s eyes, but the opposite is also true.” It should be live exchange. You must be confident in your method. It’s good to be able train upstream to protect the project in front of their relatives. In this way, we can identify his weaknesses so that we can then develop his qualities. An implementation project can be creative but technically mediocre, or vice versa, it won’t make you fail. Cinema is a team effort; finally, people who are good everywhere are useless!
For technology, you need to watch films that talk about films, metatextual works, it’s fun, but at the same time very instructive! “.

The presentation of the short film of the candidates is accompanied by statement of intent. Pierre-Yves Ranfola reminds us that this exercise, inherent in all creation, has a basic function tempt. He continues: “The project presented in the letter of intent should make someone want to take part in it. Have references and be both sincere and a bit of a liar. Sincere, because you have to convey a desire to share your universe, and a liar, because you have to tempt the examiner with something not too personal so that he can still recognize himself.

What’s the advice to prepare for screen tests throughout the year?

Our teachers give you 4 hints to prepare you throughout the year!

one. ” Go to the cinema ! It’s a bit like an athlete who doesn’t play sports, like a film student who doesn’t go into dark rooms, it’s weird,” Pierre-Yves Runfola joked.

2. Watching movies is important, but Antoine D’Avout also advises doing film readings : theoretical works or works on the history of the 7th art, critical texts concerning the directors under study and program work.

3. “Practice writing! » Antoine D’Avout recommends practicing the dissertation. The novelty of the discipline, and therefore of the exercise, requires a redoubled effort. Pierre-Yves Runfola also suggests that you practice writing scripts because “this exercise works with the imagination and will help you speak. He also suggests writing down “all these scenarios in a notepad, for example, to make a portable imaginary library in which you can easily find the image, sound or atmosphere that you imagined.”

4. “Learning to work in a team!” » warns Pierre-Yves Ranfall. The world of cinema and audiovisual media is a sector in which the work is collective and where everyone uses their skills to serve a common project. In undergraduate studies, the oral part of the exam evaluates a collective production project. So it’s important that everyone gets along!

Prepare for undergraduate studies with Studyrama Editions:

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Philosophy, physical chemistry, mathematics… Studyrama launches an original collection in line with the new Bac programs and new testing methods. Based on positive pedagogy, these fun notebooks have been designed to help students at the Première and Terminale throughout the year with their corrections.
They include the basics you need to know and offer many games and exercises, as well as mind maps or visual summaries to help stimulate, motivate, and focus.

Find in each program axis:
• double course outline page to retain key points and concepts;
• double page with games for learning and understanding in a playful way;
• graphical synthesis or mental map for the assimilation and application of basic knowledge.

Your turn !

Available at bookstores (FNAC, Amazon, Cultura…) or Studyrama bookstore.
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