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Summer School Film Club

FACILITATOR: Professor John Higgins
DATE: Starts Thursday 1 April, thereafter monthly
TIME: 5.30 to 6.30 pm (April 1, May 6, June 10, July 8, August 5) 
BOOKING: Booking through Webtickets

Wondering what to watch tonight? Somehow, for all the mass of content now available on Netflix, Showmax and other streaming formats, it is still hard to find a good film. Brainchild of Professor John Higgins, formerly Arderne Chair of Literature at UCT, the Film Club selects just one interesting film a month for you to see and to discuss with friends or family in your own time. In an online lecture Professor Higgins will introduce each month’s film as well as its director and discuss in detail several sequences.

Films chosen are either freely available on YouTube or available through a Netflix or Showmax subscription.  

Lectures may be attended online at the advertised time or downloaded for viewing when more convenient.

Comedy, suspense, the thriller, autobiography: there is something here for everyone, and the promise to deepen both your pleasure in and understanding of film. 

Film Club Selection

Fritz Lang M (1931)          

Lecture date: Thursday 1 April 5.30 pm

A must-see for any cinephile, Lang’s 1931 masterpiece was one of the first films to exploit montage of image and sound in a dynamic way, and features the great Peter Lorre’s extraordinary performance as the driven serial killer M.  Released just as Hitler’s Nazi party prepared to take power, and the film explores in a still provocative way questions of justice and retribution in a dark historical moment.  (YouTube)


Howard Hawks Bringing Up Baby 1938

Lecture date: Thursday 6 May 5.30 pm

One of the fastest, funniest films ever made, Hawk’s film brought together Cary Grant and Katherine Hepburn in a magical comedy that had the actors themselves rolling with laughter between the scenes.  A recognized masterpiece of world cinema, we will focus in particular on the dynamic relations between movement and speech in this exemplary instance of the zany comedy.  (Netflix)


Alfred Hitchcock Notorious 1946

Lecture date: Thursday 10 June 5.30 pm

A classic Hitchcock thriller starring Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman in a fraught story of love and suspicion.  (YouTube)


Quentin Tarantino Once Upon a Time in Hollywood 2019

Lecture date: Thursday 8 July 5.30 pm

Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood presents a multi-dimensional take on the play of fiction and reality in this alternative telling of the Manson Murders.  Making full use of the stellar talents of its star-studded cast, this is a deeply filmic take on acting in Hollywood. (Available on Netflix).


Pedro Almodovar Pain and Glory (2019)

Lecture date: Thursday 5 August 5.30 pm


A deeply personal film from Spanish director, Pedro Almodovar, it mixes fiction and autobiography in the moving story of a washed-up film-maker.  Featuring Almodovar stalwarts Antonio Banderas and Penelope Cruz in an award winning film voted best picture of the year by Time magazine. (Available on Showmax)

Watching these films together will serve both to entertain and educate, getting a sense of the power and pleasure of cinema.  Sign up for Film Club!