Core and Elective Courses in the School of Film
FILM 131 Film Analysis (4)
An introductory course in film appreciation with special emphasis on cinema as a dramatic art. Elements to be considered will include cinematography, performance, edited image, and sound. Selected films will be shown.
FILM 132 Introduction to Digital Filmmaking (4)
A video production course for film majors seeking a basic introduction to digital filmmaking technology and the film production process. Introduces students to the basic uses of current digital film equipment: cameras, lighting kits, editing software, and on-set safety procedures. Offers a survey of media landscapes (fiction, non-fiction, commercial, and experimental forms), production disciplines (live-action, animation, game design, virtual reality, visual effects). Prerequisite: FILM 131, Film major.
FILM 199 2D Game Prototyping (1)
It used to be games could only be created by programmers who spent hundreds of hours learning to code in assembly and be employed by huge companies, but thanks to the democratization of development tools anyone with an idea can execute their vision. This class is meant to empower people of all backgrounds to create the games they always wanted. We will learn to use a popular digital game development framework and create our own prototypes. No coding knowledge is required, but if you do know how to program you will still be able to do so. Students are encouraged to bring their own laptops.
FILM 199 Critical Approaches to the Arts and Media (4)
This course will introduce you to some basic concepts and issues in the study of the arts, including visual art, literature, film, music, architecture, digital and popular culture. Our focus will be on the ancient idea that art is a form of imitation. What might this mean? Is there a difference between imitation and appropriation? Imitation and inspiration? If art is imitation, what is real? Can imitations be more perfect than reality? We’ll read a wide range of texts and look at films and other artworks – not to answer such questions, but to multiply them.
FILM 199 Camera Basics (1)
Camera Basics introduces students to video camera settings, operations, functions, and shooting techniques. Using DSLR cameras and accessories, the course delivers information and practice through lectures, demonstrations, activities, and exercises.
FILM 199 Game Design I (1)
Learn the fundamentals of game design and how to control the creation of interactive experience. From football to Final Fantasy, we will take a look under the hood of some of your most memorable games, learn what they have in common and how to build original and amazing systems of your very own. The course will culminate with us splitting into small teams to design an original game followed by a class-wide play-test of everyone's work.
FILM 199 Game Industry Survey (1)
Digital games are still a new medium and industry, but their analog origins go back to the dawn of human history. In this class we will cover where games have been, where they are, where they are going, and where you fit in the picture. We will learn about the structure of the game industry, the structure of production studios and the roles of each type of creator employed by one, and how all of that dissolves with the current Indie Revolution.
FILM 199 Image Manipulation (1)
This course is an introduction to utilizing Photoshop in a production environment. Fundamentals of image manipulation utilizing raster-based imagery. Emphasis on tools, color management, filters, layering, masking & channels for design, animation, textures & compositing. No prior Photoshop experience necessary.
FILM 199 Intro to 3d Modeling for Real-time Applications (1)
This 2-day workshop is an introductory course in 3d modeling for real-time applications. The class is intended to be a road-map and primer for future learning in various aspects of modeling, and will focus primarily on the core ideas and workflows for making efficient models. Some concepts include: low poly vs. high poly models, UVs and baking textures, vertex vs. per-pixel lighting, texturing techniques, and hard-surface vs. organic modeling. These principles can also be applied to creating more detailed and generally less efficient models used in pre-rendered scenes.
FILM 199 Intro to After Effects (1)
An introductory course in compositing editing including: acquiring/ingesting footage from different sources; understanding RAM preview vs real time playback; simple image manipulation (levels, curves, hue, saturation); basic compositing (keying, masking, alpha channel); keyframe animation; and understanding the Render Queue.
FILM 199 Intro to Camera (1)
This workshop familiarizes students with the basic functions and operations of DSLR and mirrorless still cameras as they relate to capturing video.
FILM 199 Intro to Digital Filmmaking (4)
In this course, students learn the basic tools, practices, and processes of digital filmmaking. Students gain familiarity with the broad stylistic and disciplinary range of motion pictures and media production, and are introduced to professional practices, legal considerations, and ethical issues related to the craft. Projects require students to engage in the creative and technical aspects of developing story ideas, scriptwriting, pre-production planning, operating camera, lighting, recording sound, editing, and content delivery.
FILM 199 Intro to Fundamentals of Video Game Art (1)
This 2-day workshop is an introductory course that will break down the basic fundamentals that go into creating images and concepts specific to the video game, film, and fantasy art industry. The course will include thorough explanations and examples of the following subjects: composition, value or tone, lighting, color, perspective, anatomy and gesture, principles of design, studying habits to help retain information, as well as time management.
FILM 199 Intro to Premiere (1)
An introductory course in video editing including: acquiring/ingesting footage from different sources; basic footage types and compression schemes; manipulating footage on the timeline (cutting, dissolves, crossfades); basic grading and image control (levels, curves, hue, saturation)exporting for different purposes (web, file delivery).
FILM 199 Motion Graphics (1)
This course is an introduction to After Effects. Image manipulation utilizing raster-based content and live action footage. Emphasis on tools, color management, filters, layering, masking & channels for design, animation, textures & compositing. Prior Photoshop experience is beneficial but not necessary.
FILM 199 Pixel Art Asset Production (1)
In this class you will find out what it's like to be an artist in a game production environment. Pixel art is the perfect medium for learning how to adhere to stylization rules as established by an art director as well as the iconification process used in crafting brand identity. We will also cover conceptual design techniques, animation, and good tiling practices.
FILM 199 Story Development for Film (1)
Story Development for Film fosters creativity and critical thinking through written, oral, individual, and collaborative storytelling exercises. Students examine and investigate their creative interests, generate story ideas and develop an understanding of narrative structure for film.
FILM 199 Writing for Games (1)
How does narrative interact with dynamic systems; i.e.,games? How is story best communicated through gameplay? What is it about games that allows them to have the illusion of story on one end of the spectrum and the illusion of control on the other? In this class we will explore answers to these questions by first developing our own narratives and worlds, followed by implementing them in a game engine where players can interact directly with your imagination.
FILM 231 Advanced Film Analysis (4)
Builds upon the concepts related to the formal analysis of film and presents students with complementary, advanced methodologies, including genre study, narrative, historical research, and industry studies. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade, Film major.
FILM 257 Narrative Film Production I (4)
Digital Video Production I is designed to develop a broad range of skills integral to addressing a viewer/audience with moving images and sound. The course aims to advance skills not only in image and sound production and design, but also in writing and representational and organizational strategies for this work. Throughout this term, you will work collaboratively and on your own, using introductory technologies plus some writing exercises, to develop your critical skills as a viewer, maker and reader. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade, Film major.
FILM 258 Documentary Film Production I (4)
An introductory study of aesthetic, technical, and content-related principles of digital filmmaking in nonfiction, documentary formats. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade, Film major.
FILM 280 Classical Film Theory (4)
Introduces the significant trends of the first fifty years of Western film theory via primary and secondary source essays. Topics may include realism, authorship, conceptions of modernist representation, and Soviet montage. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade, Film major.
FILM 299 SPST: The Video Essay (4)
In this course, you will write a strong analysis of a film and then transform the paper into a videoessay. All levels are welcome but this is designed for beginners. Instructor approval required to register. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade, Film major.
FILM 331U Understanding Movies (4)
An advanced course in film appreciation with special emphasis on cinema as a dramatic art. Elements to be considered will include cinematography, performance, edited image, and sound. Selected films will be shown.
FILM 358 Narrative Film Production II (4)
This course will introduce you to the fundamental theories of editing as well as the technology and skills required to produce a well-edited work. You will learn about the history of editing and the great developments made in this art over the last century, you will study rhythm, continuity, style, space and motion. You will conduct in-depth studies of films, television programs, documentaries, commercials, trailers, music videos, and you will look at bodies of work from established editors. You will also explore the psychology of editing, and seek to answer questions like "What makes a cut work?" and "How does an effective edit engage a viewer?" You will learn how to use editing to shape and structure moving images and sound so as to invest them with intention and meaning. Prerequisite: FILM 131, FILM 257 or FILM 258, Film major.
FILM 359 Narrative Film Production III (4)
In this course, you will take the basic skills you developed in writing, shooting and editing in DVP I and DVP II, and put them to work on a more substantial project of your own. The course will instead be built around experiential learning and your active engagement with the other students in the course. You will be presenting something in class almost every week. The main project of the course will be a 5-10 minute fictional narrative film that you will write, shoot, and edit. Unlike DVP I, which concentrated on group work, this course will take a more auteurist approach—each student will be responsible for making his or her own film. Prerequisite: FILM 131, FILM 257 or FILM 258, FILM 358 or 361, Film major.
FILM 360 Branded Media (4)
In this class, students will work in small production units to produce professional quality, short form branded media videos for real clients. Students will meet with clients to determine their needs as they relate to the communication of the organization’s brand to a target audience. Students will prepare and deliver a formal pitch presentation to the clients—feedback from which will be integrated into the final concepts for the projects. Students will manage all aspects of production—from ideation to delivery. Topics include: brand strategy, producing and delivering video content for the web, client communications, pitching ideas, budgeting, and scheduling. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 360 Directing Actors for the Camera (4)
Directing for the Camera breaks down the many roles of the film director: script and character breakdowns, writing treatments, casting, directing actors, working with crews, shooting to edit, and more. Through discussions, exercises, screenings and projects, we will work to better understand the complicated job of the director and develop our own skills and creative decision making. Students will work in groups and should be prepared for a significant amount of work outside of the classroom. This is an advanced production course, students should have completed at least DVP 1 prior to taking this class. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 360 Directing for Film (4)
Through discussions, screening, and demonstrations, you will explore scripts, and previsualization along with directing actors, directing camera coverage in relationship to story, practical on-set directing, and directing for camera for single-camera film/video production. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 360 Essay Film Production (4)
Essay filmmaking combines experimental and documentary modes of production to engage in explorations of identity and culture through the lens of literary and philosophical investigation in conjunction with personal experience. This class will combine case studies of historic films and readings in this genre to support the
development and production of a personal 8-10 minute film essaygs. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 360 Image Manipulation + Motion Graphics (4)
This course explores the fundamentals of image manipulation and animated graphics using Photoshop and After Effects. Emphasis on interface exploration, cross-platform work flows, color management, layering, masking, effects, animation, and compositing. No prior Photoshop or After Effects experience required or needed. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 360 Introduction to 3D Modeling and Animation for Film and Advertising (4)
Students will learn foundational concepts and skills pertaining to 3D modeling and animation for film and advertising. Course emphasis will be on becoming familiar with Autodesk's Maya, as well as learning procedures related to modeling, material and texture editing, and beginning animation principles. Upon successful completion of this course, students should have: gained basic concepts and understanding of tools related to 3D production;
become comfortable with basics of modeling, animation, lighting, texturing and rendering; gained a basic understanding of how 3D/CG works in a production setting. This is an advanced production course, students should have completed at least DVP 1 prior to taking this class. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 360 Music Videos: Theory and Practice (4)
Music Videos: Theory and Practice is a hybrid studies/production course that will explore the intersection of music and the moving image. In every class period there will be screenings, and discussion of selected readings and of the works we screen. We will also workshop our own productions, including written pitches, and entire from-the-ground-up music videos. In addition to an examination of the music video marketplace and production model, we will learn how to analyze music videos, and explore the relationships between music, lyrics, image, narrative, experiment, technology, editing, and design. After a look back at early incarnations of music in film and on television, and early attempts at music video production, we will depart on an in-depth examination of MTV, of music videos, and of the use of music in visual media production. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 360 Producing for Film (4)
As filmmakers, we can talk about the creative aspects of filmmaking as much as we’d like, but our creative visions will never come to fruition if we don’t understand the logistical side of film and video production. In this class we will discuss scheduling, script breakdowns, budgeting, casting, fund-raising, and the many other ins and outs of film production. Students will work in groups and should be prepared for a significant amount of work outside of the classroom. This is an advanced production course, students should have completed at least DVP 1 prior to taking this class. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 360 Remakes: Theory and Production (4)
In this course we will explore the boundaries between art and plagiarism, between individual and institutional aesthetics, between homage and critique. Who likes remakes, and why? Why is Hollywood remaking so many films and TV series each year? Is it a symptom of a copycat culture devoid of new ideas, nostalgic for a mythic lost era in cinema, or a sign of a new postmodern thinking about what constitutes "New Material?" Can we create new connections with our audiences and with other filmmakers through the repetition of shared narratives? What cache does a film from the 1950s, the 1970s, the 1980s carry for a viewer in 2012? What is the relationship between a remake and an audience's collective memory? Is there learning value in the attempt to replicate something made? How is a film remake like a cover of a song? Why would a filmmaker do a shot-for-shot remake of another film? In this class, we will explore these questions through major production assignments, as well as in readings, discussions, screenings, and presentations. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 360 VFX After Effects I (4)
This class focuses on fundamentals of visual effects and motion graphics, and an exposure to some of the theory, language, techniques and workflows involved in commercial, TV and Feature Film VFX production. Learning with Adobe After Effects, this class is a natural progression for students who are interested in graphic design, Photoshop image manipulation, video editing and digital film production. By following in class demos, we'll expand your imagination to beyond what can be seen with only a camera. And we'll take time out to learn how to digitally fix common student production mistakes, too! Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 360 VFX After Effects II (4)
This class picks up where VFX I leaves off, and with the fundamentals out of the way, the focus shifts to creative exploration. Students will add a dimension to their capabilities, and create digital 3d assets to place into their live action footage and blend seamlessly. The class will be utilizing foundational Autodesk Maya skills teamed with advanced compositing in Adobe After Effects. Color will also be a focus, with additional exploration into Adobe SpeedGrade and other advanced applications, time permitting. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 361 Documentary Film Production II (4)
An intermediate study of aesthetic, technical, and content-related principles of digital filmmaking in nonfiction, documentary formats. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 362 Documentary Film Production III (4)
An advanced study of aesthetic, technical, and content-related principles of digital filmmaking in nonfiction, documentary formats. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; FILM 358 or 361, Film major.
FILM 363 Topics in Experimental Film and Media Production (4)
Introduction to new scenarios for cinema and new reasons for deploying it in different spaces, particularly in public. In using various combinations of cameras, screens, projectors, participants, and spaces it challenges students to design and construct moving image-based works that address unique historical, spatial, and social situations and struggles in public and semi-public spaces. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 363 Topics in Experimental Film and Media Production: Experimental Film Production (4)
“Experimental film” is a broad and difficult term to define, but at its core it is an approach to filmmaking that prioritizes creativity, exploration, and personal expression. In this course, students will be encouraged to break the boundaries of traditional filmmaking and explore their own creative curiosities. Whether coming from a narrative or documentary background, this course will embolden students to think outside the box and expand their creative vocabulary. We will explore the history of alternative cinema while engaging in various artistic and technical exercises designed to heighten our creative and mechanical understanding of movie-making. This will be a fun and stimulating course that widens our understanding of film and challenges us to become more artistically astute filmmakers. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 364 Sound: Production and Design (4)
Students will study and apply production and post-production sound techniques for fiction and non-fiction film and video applications. The technical aspects and aesthetic considerations of storytelling through sound in lectures, screenings, demonstrations, exercises, creative projects, and class critiques will be assessed. Topics include: principles of sound, production sound recording equipment, positioning microphones, audio software, sound mixing, effects editing, using music, editing dialogue, and careers in production and post-production audio. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 365 Editing (4)
Introduction to the fundamental theories of fiction and non-fiction editing techniques, technologies, and skills required to produce well- edited work. Topics include rhythm, continuity, style, space, and motion contextualized within global film practices. Learn how to use editing to shape and structure moving images and sound to invest them with intention, narrative and meaning. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 366 Digital Cinematography (4)
Students will study and apply camera and lighting techniques for fiction and non-fiction film and video applications. We will address the technical aspects and aesthetic considerations of visual storytelling through lectures, screenings, demonstrations, exercises, creative projects and class critiques. Topics include: pre-production visualization, methods for shooting coverage, principles of composition, employing 2D and 3D space, the moving camera, using available light, production lighting techniques, how focal length impacts the shot, controlling depth of field, and managing exposure. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; FILM 257 or FILM 258; Film major.
FILM 370U The American Acting Style: Brando, Newman, De Niro (4)
An exploration of post-World War II American movie acting, with an emphasis on the Method Actors Marlon Brando, Paul Newman and Robert De Niro. We will acquaint ourselves with the theories of Method Acting and examine the ways in which these three icons of the screen embodied, molded and advanced the technique in their roles in such films as "On the Waterfront," "The Hustler," "The Godfather," "Taxi Driver," "The Verdict" and "Raging Bull."
*FILM 370U The Animated Feature (4)
This study takes an international perspective on feature-length animation, exploring the works and methods of studios including Disney, Studio Ghibli and Laika, as well as the work of individuals including Donald Bluth, Marjane Satrami, Richard Linklater, and Sylvain Chomet. We'll look at examples of traditional cell animation, stop motion, and computer animation. Students will have the opportunity to investigate particular films, artists or studios of their choosing.
*FILM 370U The Cinema of John Carpenter (4)
This course will contrast Carpenter as a classicist filmmaker and as a postmodern maverick, as a Studio journeyman and as an auteur who takes a possessory credit on all of his movies. We will examine the contradictory themes in his films – seemingly right-wing perspectives often come up against anti-corporate, staunchly liberal messages. And we will explore genre film studies as framed by Carpenter’s work – of all the filmmakers to emerge from the late 1970s, it is Carpenter who remained most loyal to working within and often subverting classic genre conventions. Note: Hybrid course.
*FILM 370U The Classical Western (4)
This course offers a rigorous overview of the filmed Western, at one time one of the most popular cinematic and televisual genres in North America, from its origins to 1960. Topics including the vanishing frontier; law, order, and justice; nationalist expansion; individualism; natural environments; and racial and gender conflict, will guide our discussion of films such as The Great Train Robbery, The Massacre, Destry Rides Again, Stagecoach, My Darling Clementine, High Noon, Shane, and Johnny Guitar.
*FILM 370U The Coen Brothers (4)
Ever since Time magazine heralded Blood Simple as "a debut film as scarifyingly assured as any since Orson Welles['s Citizen Kane]," the Coen Brothers have been at the vanguard of American filmmaking. This course will utilize the techniques of formal film analysis to examine the Coen's cinematic signature(s), including recurring stylistic tropes, thematic interests, and reconfigurations of film genres. Readings will be assigned to offer a broader scope and historical contexts. Film screenings will include: Blood Simple, Raising Arizona, The Hudsucker Proxy, and Fargo, as well as several others.
*FILM 370U Contemporary Documentary (4)
With its growing popularity, new funding models, and ever-increasing technological possibilities, “documentary film” has become more prolific and democratic than ever. This course will look at documentary films made in the past 10 years and consider their relationship to both the larger history of non-fiction filmmaking and to other filmic forms. From recent critical hits such as 'Leviathan' or 'The Act of Killing' to cutting edge interactive and live/performed works, this course will look at the latest trends and sub-genres in documentary filmmaking and consider the ethical, historical, and aesthetic methodologies that inform them.
*FILM 370U Eighties Horror Cinema (4)
This course reads the pivotal decade of the 1980s through the horror films that it produced, reflecting not only real-life social anxieties but significant changes in the film industry itself. These changes included the rise of the “slasher” film, an increased emphasis on special effects along with bigger budgets, a nostalgic yearning for the 1950s, and a short-lived flirtation with 3-D, among others. Class screenings, readings, and discussions provide an overview of 1980s horror cinema and key developments in the genre. Tentative films include An American Werewolf in London (1981), Creepshow (1982), A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984), the black comedy Parents (1989), among others.
*FILM 370U Film Noir 1940 to 1960 (4)
This course examines film noir from the twenty-year period considered to be the classic or first wave of film noir in the United States. Although critics, scholars, filmmakers and audiences have not developed a consensus about term film noir, we will consider it in relation to genre, ideology, aesthetics, and the representation of social difference. We will also investigate several recurring themes: suspicion of legal authority, the intersection of sexuality and violence, and the social displacement of individuals marked as other. Films shown for the course might include The Maltese Falcon, Double Indemnity, The Killers, The Night of the Hunter, Gun Crazy, In a Lonely Place, and Touch of Evil.
*FILM 370U Film Noir from 1960 (4)
This course examines film noir and neo-noir as concepts that, after the studio era, are referenced explicitly by filmmakers and audiences. We will consider film noir in relation to genre, ideology, aesthetics, and the representation of social difference in the post-studio era. Our study will include several recurring themes: suspicion of legal authority; the intersection of gender, sexuality, and violence; and the social displacement of individuals marked as "other" by notions of race, ethnicity, and region. Films shown for the course might include The Long Goodbye, Chinatown, Blue Velvet, The Grifters, L.A. Confidential, Devil in a Blue Dress, The Man Who Wasn't There, Memento, and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.
*FILM 370U Graphic Novels (4)
Comics share many features with films. They resemble movie storyboards, and both genres ask us to think about the space “in between”— between moments, between the visual and the verbal, and between images and time. In this course, we will read both comics and graphic novels (essentially comic books that tell one long, self-contained story) to examine their cinematic qualities but also to appreciate what is unique to this art form. Rather than focusing on the usual superhero history of comics, we will read an eclectic variety of books centered on the theme of “growing up.” For several, we’ll have the opportunity to compare the printed story to its film adaptation.
FILM 370U History of Documentary (4)
This course will introduce students to documentary history, theory, criticism and practice. Through screenings and classroom discussions we will review and analyze the evolution of the documentary genre and the varieties of approaches adopted by non-fiction filmmakers. We will study the various films focusing on diverse political, economic, cultural, social, and historical subjects. What are the techniques and tools of documentary expression? Are documentaries art? Propaganda? This course challenges students to develop a critical eye, and to deepen their appreciation of the documentary vision. We will also look at the modes or styles that have evolved over the years: including expository, observational, interactive and reflective. We'll also explore a number of other important areas that are central in documentary filmmaking, including ethical and legal questions and the importance of deep and thorough research.
*FILM 370U Mockumentary (4)
Our historical-conventional understanding of documentary forms is that such modes present us with true, factual, and nonfictional narrative content. What happens then if the cinematic and the televisual formats that we associate with documentaries are used to present us with fake, phony, and fictional material? This course explores questions and concepts related to the Mockumentary (a.k.a. fake documentary, mock-doc) through readings, discussion, and screenings of films and television programs such as the films of Christopher Guest including This is Spinal Tap, Forgotten Silver, Reno 911!, True Stories, The Watermelon Woman, F is for Fake, and The Office.
*FILM 370U New Wave Cinemas (4)
In this course we examine key elements, themes and problems associated with the New Wave movement. The late 1950s/early 1960s saw the emergence of several groups of young, movie-obsessed, iconoclastic artists and critics who made conscious efforts to develop a new film aesthetic – one that rejected what they saw as the pretension and sentimentality of mainstream cinema. We will become familiar with the most famous of these movements, the French New Wave (La Nouvelle Vague), and with contemporaneous movements in Japan and Czechoslovakia. This transnational perspective will help us to understand how and why some themes became relevant in multiple contexts, and also how geo-political and cultural differences resulted in varied treatments of similar issues. “New Wave” has continued to be used as a blanket term to describe film aesthetics concerned with upsetting the status quo. We’ll conclude by looking at how the New Wave phenomenon continued as an influence in the late 20th century, and use it to question some of the ways scholars have studied and categorized film history.
*FILM 370U Pacific Northwest on Screen (4)
What images and stories come to mind when you think of the Pacific Northwest? Mountains and primeval forests? Quirky, rain and beer soaked cities? Reese Witherspoon “finding herself” in the “Wild”? Narcoleptic hustlers and drugstore cowboys? Glittery, well-groomed vampires falling love? This class will explore why and how the Pacific Northwest has been represented in film. This is an interdisciplinary course that will combine film studies with cultural studies and cultural geography in order to understand the values, identities and power relations that have been historically attached to this landscape and geographic region. In addition to looking at how place is represented in individual films, we’ll consider the influence of globalization, and production and distribution practices.
*FILM 370U Post-Modern Shakespeare (4)
This course focuses on how we continue to encounter Shakespeare’s texts in our contemporary world, with a particular focus on postmodern reworkings of his plays for the screen.
*FILM 370U Queer Cinema (4)
Queer Cinema considers both the commercial representation of LGBTQ identities in international film from the silent era to the present, including the Queer New Wave in the US in the 1990s, while simultaneously exploring non-commercial and niche markets in which queer representation thrives. Alongside our study of representation, we will also consider how cinematic institutions, such as film festivals, respond to and cater to queer audiences. This class will feature weekly screenings and regular guest speakers.
*FILM 370U Sports, Myth, and Contemporary Cinema (4)
In this course we are going to examine the marriage of sports and cinema. The two make nearly perfect bedfellows: both feature larger-than-life stars, incredible conflict, suspense that runs to the final seconds of the program, and amazing fairytale endings. Both give you someone to identify with, someone to root for. Both lay out before us all of our greatest dreams – who among us hasn’t wished at one point to hit the winning run in the World Series, or to throw the winning pass in the Super Bowl? In this class we will look at sports on film, thinking about how sports can define us, what they can teach us about ourselves, and how those lessons have been enacted in the cinema.
*FILM 370U Supernatural Horror Films, 1970s - Present (4)
Horror cinema has long been haunted by movies in which troubled families move into homes already occupied by ghosts, demons, and other supernatural forces. Focusing on the "supernatural family horror" sub-genre of the 1970s and 80s and its resurrection in the past decade, we will use ghosts and other "things that go bump in the night" to unlock the mystery of why supernatural horror remains so popular with moviegoers.
*FILM 370U Totalitarianism: Literature + Film (4)
This course studies the relationship between art and totalitarian movements -- focusing primarily on film, though also addressing literature and the fine arts. How did and does the age of cinema foster totalitarian movements? What narrative and aesthetic strategies do filmmakers use to portray the extremity of life under totalitarian regimes? How do films -- both documentary and narrative -- struggle to make sense of totalitarianism in its aftermath? Emphasis on Nazi Germany, Mao's Cultural Revolution, and Stalin's Soviet Union, though other regimes will also be addressed.
*FILM 370 The Western since 1960 ("Back in the Saddle Again") (4)
While the Western has not maintained the popularity it once had during Hollywood's studio era, production of the genre has never ceased in the United States. In this course, we will consider Westerns produced since 1960 as we discuss revisions of the genre as well as "returns" to the genre's classical roots; the internationalization of the genre; nationalist expansion; and racial and gender conflict in films including examples of the "spaghetti" Western, The Wild Bunch, MacCabe and Mrs. Miller, Blazing Saddles, and Unforgiven.
*FILM 370U Women Filmmakers (4)
This course explores the work of women filmmakers, from the inception of film to today’s productions in film and television. We will take an international look at the work women have done as writers, directors, performers and producers of various projects, including creators as disparate as Ida Lupino, Agnes Varda, Sally Potter, Mira Nair and Kasi Lemmons. Students will also pursue solo projects on filmmakers of their choosing.
*FILM 370U Woody Allen (4)
Woody Allen is a filmmaker. He's also a jazz musician, playwright, comedian, philosopher, artist, author and nebbish. Despite his recent work in cities like London, Rome, Paris, and Barcelona, he is the filmmaker who will perhaps historically be most closely tied to New York City. In many ways, Allen's films are New York "they're fast, funny, complicated, paranoid, narcissistic, romantic, moving, and they never stop coming at you". For most of his career, Allen has worked on a one-film-a-year schedule. Even at the age of 77, he continues that pace: his 45th film, Blue Jasmine, was released this past summer. Roger Ebert described Allen as a "treasure of the cinema." And he is. One of the most prolific and influential filmmakers in history, Allen has provoked extensive critical inquiry; created his own subgenre of neurotic urban comedy, inspiring thousands of filmmakers who've come after him; and managed to remain relevant into his sixth decade of filmmaking, when most directors struggle to retain success after one or two films. Midnight in Paris, released in 2011, was the biggest hit of Allen's career, grossing over 150 million dollars. With that film, he also became the only screenwriter in history to win an Oscar in three different decades. In this course, we will examine as many facets of Allen's filmmaking as we can in our quick ten-week term. We will look at Allen's writing style; the nature of his comedy; his debt to his heroes, Bergman and Fellini; his relationship with New York; his feelings about art and filmmaking; his controversial personal life and the scandal that plagued him for much of the 1990s; the autobiographical aspects of his work; and the recurring philosophies and themes in his films.
FILM 374 Topics in Screenwriting (4)
Repeatable course in screenwriting involving short and long form screenplays, the analysis of narrative structure for the screen, and the practical application screenwriting techniques. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 374 Topics in Screenwriting: Feature Film (4)
Learn how to write a film spec screenplay that will get you noticed from someone who’s done it. This is a writing workshop with someone who has worked in Hollywood for almost 20 years. They will help you understand why writing for film is different to any other type of creative writing and guide you in maximizing the potential of your story. Learn how to develop compelling characters and write successful scenes that encourage a reader to keep turning the page - easier said than done! Students may come with an idea they wish to develop into a first draft, or an existing script they want to take to the next level. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 374 Topics in Screenwriting: Genre Screenwriting (4)
Comedy, Crime, Science Fiction, and Horror cinema all use similar conventions when it comes to structure, tension, and timing. In this course, students explore effective genre writing for the screen through the examination of the evolution of genre film, writing exercises, and critical analysis. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 374 Topics in Screenwriting: Long Form Feature Workshop (4)
This course will take the form of a traditional writing workshop, with a focus on the feature film screenplay. Screenwriting is among the only types of writing that is ultimately never meant to be read by any level of mass audience. That is, you are composing texts that are intended to be realized in a non-literary medium – one grounded in audiovisual dimensions. The challenges of that undertaking will form the core focus of our workshops – issues such as story structure, dialogue, theme, voice, format, character development, action, setting, and descriptive writing. The main project in this course will be the first part of a feature film screenplay that you develop and write over the course of the term. As part of that process, you will have pitched your screenplay in class, written a pitch, directed a staged reading, and of course workshopped your script with your classmates. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 374 Topics in Screenwriting: Screenwriting Workshop (4)
This course will take the form of a traditional writing workshop, with a focus on the feature film screenplay. Previous screenwriting experience or classwork is assumed, as we will not spend considerable time exploring screenwriting theory. If you are concerned about your level of experience, please see the professor before registration. Screenwriting is among the only types of writing that is ultimately never meant to be read by any level of mass audience. That is, you are composing texts that are intended to be realized in a non-literary medium—one grounded in audiovisual dimensions. The challenges of that undertaking will form the core focus of our workshops—issues such as story structure, dialogue, theme, voice, format, character development, action, setting, and descriptive writing. The main project in this course will be the first part of a feature film screenplay that you develop and write over the course of the term. As part of that process, you will have pitched your screenplay in class, written a proposal, directed a staged reading, and of course workshopped your script with your classmates. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 374 Topics in Screenwriting: Short Form (4)
This course will introduce you to the art and craft of screenwriting and encourage you to explore and develop your own ideas and interests and your own writing. Among the topics explored will be story structure, dialogue, theme, voice, script format, and development and continuity in characterization, action, and setting. The main project in this course will be a short film screenplay that you develop and write over the course of the term. As part of that process, you will have also written a treatment and created biographies for your main characters. Before you begin your screenplay, you will also complete a number of short writing journal exercises which will aid you in developing a sense of story structure, dramatic conflict, characterization, visual and descriptive writing, and the expression of ideas on paper. This course will be conducted entirely online, there will be no on-campus meetings. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 374 Topics in Screenwriting: TV Script Analysis: Writing in Different Genres (4)
Any one wanting a career as a TV writer, or wanting a look behind the scenes, must understand how to write in the voice of any show. In this class, students will examine several top TV shows such as Breaking Bad through the lens of a staff writer. Each week we will read, watch, discuss and analyze an hour TV show. Students will then write in the voice of that show. PPrerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 374 Topics in Screenwriting: Writing the TV Spec Script (4)
Aspiring and experienced TV writers use spec scripts as calling cards to attract agents and get on a writing staff. Students in this course will work on a spec script, either of original material or based on an existing show. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 381 Film History I (4)
In this course, the first of a three-part survey of the history of narrative film, we will look at the evolution of film language from the silent era to the introduction of sound; how the influences of a broad range of cinematic art movements, including Expressionism, Impressionism, Surrealism and Poetic Realism, contributed to the classical Hollywood style. We will also examine the artistic, economic and technological forces that led to the Hollywood studio system and the popularity of genres such as the western, the musical and the gangster film. Discussions, readings and short assignments will exercise students' abilities to think, speak and write critically about films and their historical context. Co-requisite: TA 381L Film History I Lab (Zero Credits.) Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 382 Film History II (4)
In this course, the second of a three-part survey of the history of narrative film, we will look at the major artistic, economic and technological trends of motion picture production during the post-war era; how directors such as Hitchcock and Welles were able find a unique expression within the parameters of the classical style and the commercial pressures of the studios. We will also explore how world cinema movements, such as neo-realism and the new wave, presented aesthetic and political challenges to the Hollywood model. Discussions, readings and short assignments will exercise students' abilities to think, speak and write critically about films and their historical context. Co-requisite: TA 382L Film History I Lab (Zero Credits.) Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 383 Film History III (4)
In this course, the third of a three-part survey of the history of narrative film, we will look at contemporary world film production from the struggles of an independent and avant-garde cinema to the CGI effects of today's blockbuster. We will also examine how world cinema production has adapted to new digital technologies and the demands of a global market. Discussions, readings and short assignments will exercise students' abilities to think, speak and write critically about films and their historical context. Co-requisite: FILM 383L Film History I Lab (Zero Credits.) Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 384U: American Crime Drama: Huston, Scorsese and the Coens (4)
From the birth of film noir to the era of independent film, directors have used crime stories to express their unique voices and visions. Through examination of several films each by John Huston, Martin Scorsese, and the Coen brothers, we will trace the history of the crime film as a genre and explore the ways filmmakers develop their artistic signatures through the decades of long careers.
FILM 384U: Jewish American Experience in Film (4)
The Jewish experience in the United States has been reflected, celebrated, and challenged in American cinema since the beginning of the sound era—which began with the release of The Jazz Singer, a blockbuster film about a cantor’s son torn between American success and Jewish tradition. In this course we will examine and critique cinematic representations of the American Jewish story, looking at immigration, Americanization, suburbia, antisemitism, politics, race, faith, and nostalgia. Films include Hester Street, Avalon, The Way We Were, State and Main, Fiddler on the Roof, Bye Bye Braverman, the documentaries Town Bloody Hall and Arguing the World, and Yiddish classics Uncle Moses and Tevye the Dairyman.
*FILM 384U Race + Class in Contemporary American Cinema (4)
Sorry To Bother You: Depictions of Race and Class in Contemporary American Cinema course will focus on depictions of class and race in contemporary film. We will discuss how filmmakers have used of satire, fantasy, documentary and drama as a way to examine the hot-button issues that drive the national conversations about who we are as Americans. We will analyze the systems of production, discussing representation both in front of and behind the cameras, using the following possible films: Moonlight, Hell or High Water, Sorry to Bother You, The Big Short, The Visitor, Black Panther, and others. Using contemporary film criticism along with an historically grounded look at how Hollywood and independent filmmakers have tackled these issues, it will ask students to engage in a way that helps create fresh commentary.
FILM 401 Research (1-6)
Credit to be arranged.
FILM 402 Independent Study (1-12)
Credit to be arranged.
FILM 404 Cooperative Education/Internship (1-12)
Credit to be arranged.
FILM 405 Reading and Conference (1-6)
Credit to be arranged.
FILM 406 Project (1-6)
Credit to be arranged.
FILM 407 Seminar (1-6)
Credit to be arranged.
FILM 408 Workshop (1-6)
Credit to be arranged.
FILM 409 Practicum (1-12)
Credit to be arranged.
FILM 410 Selected Studies (1-6)
Credit to be arranged.
FILM 450 Portfolio and Professional Development (4)
Requires students to investigate their interests, values, personality, and skills as the basis for discovery and communication of their personal brand as they begin their careers. Students will generate a branded digital portfolio of their work that includes marketing materials and work samples. Topics include: building a personal brand, designing a website, identifying areas of professional interest, assessing strengths, getting started on a career path, acquiring job search skills, interviewing, freelancing, and networking. This is an advanced production course. Prerequisite: Permission from the instructor is required to register.
FILM 451 Advanced Production Workshop (4)
Provides an intensive production experience for advanced students who apply acquired skills to the creation of a significant, sophisticated short film in a chosen genre. Students manage all aspects of production and generate marketing materials and a distribution plan for the finished film. In addition to producing their own work, students are required to crew on fellow classmates' projects and therefore exit the course with high quality assets to add to a reel or portfolio. Prerequisite: Either FILM 359 or FILM 362, Film major.
FILM 460 Advanced Topics in Production (4)
Advanced study of a variety of specialized skills and/or genres related to digital film production. From term to term, topics might include: Massive Media; Visual Effects; Music Videos; Web Cinema; Urban Media. Course may be repeated for credit with different topic. Prerequisite: Either FILM 359, FILM 362, or permission from the instructor, Film major.
FILM 480 Contemporary Film Theory (4)
A survey of film theory and criticism the 1960s to the present day. Students are introduced to key concepts and major figures from Structuralism, Semiotics, Psychoanalysis, Feminism, and Narrative Theory. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 484 Anatomy of a Movie (4)
Operates as a case study of one well known, critically acclaimed film, examining the industrial, technical, cultural, and artistic elements in the film's production, exhibition and reception. Topics include studio ideology and production strategies, the star system, and historic context and meaning of films, independent cinema practices. Prerequisite: FILM 131 and upper division standing.
FILM 486 American Avant-Garde Film (4)
We will study film and video makers whose work intersects with underground cinema and the art world. Filmmakers to be studied include Maya Deren, Stan Brakhage, George Kuchar, Peggy Ahwesh, Kenneth Anger, Andy Warhol, Su Friedrich, and Miranda July. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
*FILM 486 Bodies in Motion: From Kino-Attractography to Silent Cinema (4)
This course considers how early film and pre-cinematic amusements and image-producing technologies, such as x-ray machines and series photography, captured the human body in motion, influencing how it was represented and understood in mass culture and early film and cinema. Among other topics, we may consider Muybridge and Marey's photographic motion studies to examind the relationship between still and motion pictures, study how early film was theorized in relation to the human body in American public discourse, and examine the rise of the Hollywood star system in the 1920s as it was accentuated by film styles and narratives that highlighted how bodies move and may be represented via such formal devices as the close-up and the long shot. If you were enchanged by The Artist (2011) or Hugo (2011), this class will augment the magic of those films by illuminating the historic and poetic conditions Scorsese and Hazanavicius tapped into their recent films. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 486 Documentary Media (4)
A course surveying a history of documentary film, including but not limited to the early Edison and Lumiere films, WWII propaganda, the personal documentaries of Ross McElwee, Werner Herzog, Concert films, and foundational classics (Nanook, Sans Soleil, etc) as well as new directions (Act of Killing, Serial podcast, etc). Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 486 Feminist Film/Theory (4)
This seminar will provide an overview of some of the major perspectives and contributions that feminist theory has made to how we think about cinema. It will also introduce several feminist directors/films, which may include Dash’s Daughters of the Dust, Chytilova’s Daisies, Ackerman’s Je, tu, il, elle, and other films that have been major topics of feminist debate, such as Stella Dallas. Topics examined may include psychoanalytic theories of the gaze, women and the avant-garde, feminism and transnational cinema, and feminist documentary. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 486 The Film Archive: Preservation and Access (4)
This seminar will involve an exploration and appreciation of non-Hollywood "Orphan" film - notably experimental, educational, home movies and various forms of time based media. Will include a basic understanding of digital preservation, modes of projection, proto cinematic devices and an overview of the role of technology in the archive. Students will be asked to consider the archive in its various forms as well as investigate issues of access and preservation when dealing with both analog and digital media. Course will include weekly film screenings, readings, discussions and creative projects. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 486 Freud and Psychoanalysis (4)
In this seminar we will focus, first of all, on reading Freud’s original writings and piecing together his groundbreaking theories of the human psyche, and second, on how a variety of social and political movements—centering on gender, sexuality, nationality, race, ability, etc.—have taken up his ideas to articulate mechanisms of oppression and envision new modes of being. Along the way, we will analyze film and possibly other genres to flesh out the implications of the theories we are reading. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 486 Shakespeare + Immigration (4)
This course will focus on how Shakespeare has crossed borders between genres and countries to create versions of national identity. How do three of Shakespeare’s plays— The Tempest, The Merchant of Venice, and Othello—address complexities of race, nation, homeland, heredity, sexuality, and otherness? How do popular treatments of these plays—mainly films but also other popular artforms—reflect on the power dynamics of border crossings and the status of the “alien”? How has Shakespeare furthered or resisted colonizing projects in places like India? How have immigrant communities embraced Shakespeare (as in Yiddish and Latino/a/x Shakespeare productions)? How have African Americans dealt with Shakespeare and the history of slavery? Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Topics in International Film and the Moving Image (4)
Concentrated study of national cinema (non-US) or national cinema movement. Students will consider the cinema in relation to: national context and cinematic history; other national/transnational cinemas; and independence and nationalism, censorship, and political and artistic movements. Examples include Irish Cinema, Italian Neorealism, and New Wave Cinemas. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Class War in Global Art Film (4)
This class analyzes global art films focused on social and economic inequality. We begin with two early films representing class conflict, Strike (Eisenstein, 1925) and Metropolis (Lang, 1927). We then ask how today's directors rival Eisenstein and Lang in their use of genre/genre-mixing, montage/editing, sound/special effects, and sympathy/identification to engage and sometimes enrage contemporary audiences. We'll study historical dramas -- Zama (Martel, 2017) and Peterloo(Leigh, 2018); genre hybrids -- Sorry to Bother You (Riley, 2018) and The Killing of a Sacred Deer (Lanthimos, 2017); realism -- Beatriz at Dinner (Arteta, 2017) and Capernaum (Labaki, 2018); post-communist thrillers -- Elena(Zvyagintsev, 2011) and Hide and Seek (Liu, 2016); and satires -- The Square (Ostlund, 2017) and Parasite (Bong Joon Ho, 2019). What kinds of stories of class warfare do these films tell? What kinds of sociological analyses do they presuppose? How do they, or do they, resolve the class tensions they establish to deliver closure for their viewers? Creative interpretation emphasized in the writing of three papers over the term.Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Contemporary Cinema of Mainland China (4)
Film 487/587 is a critical introduction to mainland Chinese film that covers the Second Golden Age, the Cultural Revolution period, 5th and 6th generations, commercial and “Main Melody” dramas, and the New Documentary Movement. Our goals are to understand cinema’s development within the sociopolitical history of China from Mao to now; articulate thoughtful analyses of key film texts; and deepen our understanding of Chinese film’s place within world cinema. No prior knowledge of Chinese cinema and culture required. All films have English subtitles and readings are in English. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Contemporary Eastern European and Russian Cinema (4)
From the Czech New Wave to Tarkovsky's poetic works (Solaris, Stalker) to the award-winning Ida and the devastating recent films of Andrei Zvyagintsev (Leviathan, Loveless), the Soviet Bloc and the ex-Soviet Bloc have been home to some of the most important filmmaking of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. This course begins in the 60s with the Czech New Wave and then explores Hungarian (Jansco, Szabo) and Polish (Wajda, Kieslowski) cinema, and ends in Russia by moving from Tarkovsky through Sokurov to Zvyaginstev. Topics will include: the aesthetic of the long take ("sculpting in time"), magical realism and surrealism, black comedy and satire, and the fraught history of cinematic representations of Eastern European and Russian involvement in the Holocaust. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Contemporary Korean Cinema (4)
This course examines contemporary South Korean cinema created after the mid-90s. It aims to help students understand its historical, political, industrial, and aesthetic contexts as well as its relationships with other film cultures such as Hollywood, Hong Kong cinema, and Japanese cinema. By doing so, students will be able to appreciate Korean film genres, auteurs, styles, and historical and national allegory. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Eastern European/Soviet Union/Russia (4)
This class will study the cinemas of Eastern Europe, the Soviet Union, and Russia from 1945 to the present. Topics will include: patterns of state control until 1989, the effect of the dissolution of the Soviet Union on the region's film industries, and the major themes of the cinemas such as WWII and the Holocaust, national allegory and historicism, existentialism and the "meta-modern", and the relationship between formal techniques and preoccupations specific to the countries and their traumatic histories (the long takes, for example, of Andrei Tarkovsky, Bela Tarr, and the Romanian New Wave directors or the documentarism of Kieslowski, Meszaros, and Mungiu). Directors will include: Wajda and Kieslowski (Poland), Szabo and Meszaros (Hungary), Chytilova and Hrebejk (Czech), Porumboiu and Mungiu (Romania), and Shepitko, Tarkovsky (Soviet Union) and Zvyagintsev (Russia). Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Film and Religion (4)
At the heart of many religions lies an idea of transcendence, of a spiritual dimension beyond mundane existence and beyond the world of the senses. In order for the religion to attract new followers it needs, however, to manifest the transcendental ideas through works of art, architecture and rites that apply to the very same senses that the religion deems unnecessary. The Romanian researcher of religions, Mircea Eliade, gave the name “hierophany” to these works of art that manifest to the senses that which is sacred, that is beyond human perception. In this course we will watch films that are hierophanic, films that manifest through cinematic devices - plot, cinematography, sound and music – the fundamental beliefs of a certain religion or a religious sect. After making acquaintance with the basic ideas of different religions we will examine how the abstract ideals of a system of belief, are incarnated in a film, usually through the character of a religious hero who models the correct behavior that leads one to transcendence. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Forbidden Love in Israeli Film (4)
What can be learned about a society from watching its films concentrated on forbidden love? First one can learn about the groups that are not supposed to marry each other within the society. Second, one can learn about people whose body or sexual tendency are not within what the society dims “legitimate.” We will watch films and film excerpts mostly from the 2000s with a couple going as far back as the 1960s in order to evaluate the history of tension points in Israeli society. Among the forbidden loves we will examine are love between an immigrant and a native, love between an Ashkenazi and a Sephardi, love between an Arab and a Jew, gay love in the Israeli military, forbidden loves in a Kibbutz and love between two overweight people. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Gender + Sexuality in Global Digital Culture (4)
Can digital technology materialize utopian dreams of gender or sexually marginalized groups by disturbing established social systems? Or does it elicit a harsher, more discriminating reality for women and LGBT populations? To answer these questions, this course examines a diversity of complex issues related to gender and sexuality in digital culture within the global community as well as the U.S. culture. Students will read cutting- edge scholarship and investigate the ways in which digital technology forms and re-forms gender and sexuality from feminist and queer perspectives. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Japanese Cinema + Media Survey (4)
This course surveys major developments in Japanese film history examining how patterns of distribution, exhibition, and reception have influenced film aesthetics and film style over the last century. Through the course films will be analyzed in relation to broader movements such as the rise and fall of Benshi, Pure Film, occupation cinema, Japan’s new wave, high-growth anxiety, blockbuster cinema, and media convergence in the 21st century. Through this course students will be able to critically assess films of this national cinema and understand how Japanese cinema as an institution responds to and intervenes in the social, cultural, and political history of Japan. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 New German Cinema (4)
This course examines the stylistically diverse film movement known as New German Cinema, which flourished between the 1960s and early 1980s in West Germany. The filmmakers included under this banner made oppositional films that challenged dominant filmmaking practices, critiqued the current social and political order, and grappled with the complexities of German history. We will study the cultural, political, and historical context in which this movement developed as well as major films and filmmakers that came out of this context. Directors will include (among others) Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Werner Herzog, Margarethe von Trotta, Wim Wenders, Alexander Kluge and Helma Sanders-Brahms. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.
FILM 487 Transnational Stardom (4)
What do John Wayne, Jackie Chan, and Japanese silent film star Sessue Hayakawa all have in common? As stars, each of these actors have circulated globally and their “meanings” have varied depending on the cultural context in which their work was received. This class will examine what it means to study “star texts” and how they can contribute to the study of films and film industries through a transnational framework. We will analyze a variety of stars from film history in diverse cultural and national contexts through the perspectives of masculinity and femininity, race and class, and other culturally variable categories. Prerequisites: FILM 131 and and FILM 132, in which you must earn a minimum C+ grade; Film major.