(Film lesson of the day: Cahiers du Cinema is a v influential French film publication started by contemporaries of the French New Wave. My professor said she had a friend who once said that if he walked into a bar and saw a girl reading Cahiers, he’d marry her.)

But, anyway, Cahiers du Cinema translates to cinema notebook or something like that. That’s the important part.

JHU_Quan recently shared a glimpse into his various note taking strategies and supplies. I want to share, a bit more explicitly, what my notes look like. As a film major, I often get from non-majors, “Oh, so do you guys just, like, watch movies and talk about them?” And I’m like well… yeah… I guess. That’s a bit reductive, but yeah, sure.

So I’m here to show how rich and interesting and meaningful “just talking about movies” can be, alongside with my totally bizarre doodle-note hybrids.






  • that note of just “staircases!!!” is hilarious
  • I was really dedicated to the doodle game in this class
  • I’m so glad I saved these… it’s really interesting revisiting previous impressions after having watched some of these films again. Rear Window is one of my favorite films; I study and write about it a ton because it’s just so rich. These notes are particularly insightful, which is no surprise, given that this class was taught by department chair Linda DeLibero and she’s brilliant.
  • the fun of code-era cinema is how much stuff is considered totally inappropriate





  • that little purple dude I drew on the first page is cute
  • that anecdote about the woman with synesthesia whose husband’s voice taste like buttered toast is my favorite thing ever
  • I have a habit of writing down little things that people contribute during class, little snippets of discussion, even if they aren’t super consequential to what we’re talking about. “Is honey the same as blue?” was one of those. I think we were talking about how people probably view colors differently; do we hear sounds differently, too?
  • the second sheet is pretty much all film history stuff, which is always fun to revisit!!!


I haven’t talked about Monster Films yet because, well, I’m just currently taking it! It’s my last required film class. Sad. But it’s also a great class, very fast-paced and discussion-driven. For this class, I decided to take notes in my trusty Moleskine (which is basically my little personal journal/I try to keep super academic stuff out of it), which is a testament to how philosophical this class can get, which I love. To me, the beauty of studying the humanities is that even when you’re “just” studying a film, you’re really examining the human experience and what it means to live. We’re answering these big philosophical questions about being through film. Dope!




  • I had to cover up some ~personal~ poetry. That comes with the territory of this being my journal
  • My Moleskine has poetry that resonates with me on pretty much every page. I like the contrast between my class notes and the poem
  • I’m probably going to end up writing a paper about Cat People because it deals with feminine sexuality and I just can’t resist writing about that, apparently.
  • that full-page doodle of those circle things took about two full lectures, or about 5 hours oops