Movie club

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A film club (or film club ) is an association that organizes the showing of films without commercial intent. Often, films that are otherwise barely seen or especially avant-garde films are shown. The opportunity to discuss the films with the directors is often seen as ideal. The first film clubs were founded by enthusiasts , some of whom later became famous directors.

The Fédération Internationale des Ciné-Clubs (International Federation of Film Societies) was founded in Cannes in 1947.


A film club is usually founded to exchange ideas about film and films. Sometimes it is a group of cinema- goers who simply come to a cinema for an agreed date to see a film together, but far more often the film club initiates the showing of a particular film. This can be done in cooperation with a cinema operator , but the film club often has access to its own screening facilities.

Film clubs can be found, for example, in the field of youth work , adult education , universities or religious communities. A film club at universities is generally referred to as a university cinema .

The aim of program work in film clubs is not only to convey information about the history, techniques and content of the medium or to use films as an information medium. Ideally, through the sensual experience of seeing, they give viewers an idea of ​​the diverse possibilities of the medium, which is not so clear in the selection of films that can be seen in commercial cinemas and on television.



The first film clubs in Germany emerged in the 1910s, including the Berlin Film Club , for which William Wauer was managing director for four years. After the end of the Second World War in 1945, the British and French occupying powers initiated a German re-establishment based on the domestic model in order to promote non-political cultural exchange and democratic awareness. Until the 1950s, the heyday of the film club movement, there was a wave of start-ups, also in the Soviet occupation zone and later GDR. From the 1980s onwards, the GDR film club movement set its own, highly valued price, the foundlings price . The film clubs in the FRG either became independent associations or worked under a carrier that was committed to education and culture . They provided important impulses for the German film landscape, for example the establishment of film festivals such as the Mannheim-Heidelberg International Film Festival . In the Federal Republic , the number of film clubs decreased as on television and in cinemas were increasingly seen more challenging films and film classics. As a result, the umbrella organization Association of German Film Clubs dissolved in 1971 . Since the 1970s, municipal cinemas have replaced film clubs in many places . Many communal cinemas started out as mainly voluntary associations, over time many communal cinemas, especially in larger cities, managed to get their cinema work financed by communal and other state funds. This meant a professionalization of the cinema work by hiring full-time employees. In contrast to the film clubs, a large part of the administrative work and the game operations in these cinemas is therefore performed by paid employees, but in many municipal cinemas volunteer work is still carried out in so-called program councils and program committees, which are responsible for putting together the film program instead of.

With the end of the GDR , many East German film clubs lost their financial and organizational basis, and here too some made the move to communal cinema. The interest group for film communication was formed as an umbrella organization for film clubs and cultural cinemas with their own regional associations.


The first Finnish film club Projektio (projection) was founded in 1934. The 'soul' of Projektio was the architect Alvar Aalto .


The Italian film theorist Ricciotto Canudo , who had lived in Paris since 1921, founded the first film club. The director and film critic Louis Delluc founded one of the first film clubs in France and the important film magazine Cinéma after the First World War . In 1930 Jean Vigo founded Nice's first film club : les Amis du Cinéma. In 1935, Henri Langlois and Georges Franju founded a film club Cercle du cinéma to show old films , from which the Cinémathèque française emerged in 1936 .

After the Second World War, the movement of the cinema clubs took off again. In 1945 the Annecy Film Club was founded, from which the Animated Film Festival emerged. In 1948 André Bazin founded the avant-garde film club "Objectif 49" with Jean-Charles Tacchella, Doniol-Valcroze, Astruc, Claude Mauriac, René Clément and Pierre Kast, of which Jean Cocteau became president . This film club, which was to become the cradle of the Nouvelle Vague , organized the Festival du Film Maudit , which took place in Biarritz in 1949 .

François Truffaut vividly described Bazin’s involvement in the film club movement: “In the first days of our friendship - it was around 1947 - I was lucky enough to accompany him to his film presentations and watch him first in a Dominican monastery and two days later Showed two Chaplin one-act plays to workers in a metal factory in the half hour between lunch and return to the workbench, both of which he knew how to inspire his audience and to involve everyone in the discussion. "

The first women-only film club was established in Toulouse in the 1970s.

In 2005 , the Musée Dapper in Paris founded the first film club entirely dedicated to the cinema of Africa, the Caribbean and the Afro-American diaspora. The occasion is the 50th anniversary of African cinema .


Satyajit Ray founded the first Indian film club, the Calcutta Film Society , in 1947 .


The Bozen Film Club was founded in Bozen in 1978 and is now a member of the transnational association Europa Cinemas .


Jacques Giraldeau and Jacques Parent founded the first film club in Québec at the Université de Montréal in 1948 .


Jean-François Revel, philosophy teacher at the Lycée français in Mexico between 1950 and 1952, founded the first film club in Latin America.


Luis Bunuel founded the first film club in 1928.


The first film club in Tunisia was founded in Tunis in 1946.

United States

Inspired by the film screenings organized by Maya Deren , Amos Vogel and his wife founded Cinema 16 in 1947 .



  • Wieland Becker, Volker Petzold: Tarkowski meets King Kong. History of the film club movement in the GDR. Berlin 2001, ISBN 3-89158-309-5 (Contains an informative excursus on the West German film club movement)
  • Anne Paech: The School of the Spectators. On the history of the German film club movement. In: Hilmar Hoffmann , Walter Schobert (Ed.): Between yesterday and tomorrow. West German post-war film 1946–1962 . Kommunales Kino, Frankfurt 1989, pp. 226–245.


  • Dick Schoemaker: Cine-Club compendium: a practical guide for organizing and operating a film society . Canadian Federation of Film Societies, [Toronto] [1978?], Compiled and edited by Dick Schoemaker.


  • Jean-François Aurenty: Le mouvement ciné-club en France dans l'après-guerre (1945–1955) . Mém. Maîtrise, cinéma: Paris 3, 1994
  • Léo Bonneville: Le Ciné-club, méthodologie et portée sociale . Fides, Montréal / Paris 1968
  • Christophe Gauthier: La Passion du cinéma. Cinéphiles, ciné-clubs et salles spécialisées à Paris de 1920 à 1929 .AFRHC, 2002, ISBN 978-2-913758-26-1
  • Vincent Pinel: Introduction au ciné-club: histoire, théorie, pratique du ciné-club en France . Éditions ouvrières, Paris 1964

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Friedrichstrasse 227 . In: Berliner Adreßbuch , 1936, IV, p. 254. “Filmclub”.
  2. ^ François Truffaut : André Bazin, literary man of the cinema . In: André Bazin: What is film? Alexander Verlag, Berlin 2004, pp. 17–28, quotation p. 18.
  3. website Fimclubs Bolzano , accessed on 24 December of 2019.