Top positive review
This IS a collegiate Intro to Film course in a $30, ~200 page paperback
December 10, 2017
This was the the text for an online film course I did over the summer at a major university, and the teacher basically just had us go through this book and do the activities. If I didn't have to check the box that I took this class for credit, I could've saved a lot of money and just bought this book and worked through it by myself.
I cannot say enough good things about Sikov. In the introduction he's pretty up-front about the fact that this isn't a lofty film studies book for egg heads and super-nerds (not that there's anything wrong with those types). It's a very basic introductory text to the discipline of film studies, written in educated but not difficult language, so anyone can pick it up and read it. Each chapter handles a different aspect of feature length narrative film, then has an activity that shows you how to analyze a film or scene based on the material covered. Each chapter, while still covering different topics, builds off of the last one, so the book culminates in giving you all the skills you need to write a full film analysis of your own. It's also got a solid glossary and index, so as you move on to applying what you've learned, it's easy to go back and re-read parts you might need a refresher on.
I'm actually writing this review as I purchase a second copy for a friend who's considering pursuing a career in cinematography and videography.