Film Department

Requirements for Concentration in Film:

1) 11 units required.

2) Film 210, Film 211, Film 392 required. Film 392 must be taken senior year.

3) 2 additional Film Department units in cinema studies at the 200-level or above. These units must be completed before enrolling in Film 392.

4) 1 film history unit in a national cinema that is not American. This course, which must be at the 200-level or above, may be taken within the Department of Film or another Vassar Department. With prior approval, a film history course taken while a student is attending a JYA or Exchange Program may satisfy this requirement.

5) 5 additional Film Department units in film. These may be any combination of courses at the 200-level or above in cinema studies, film and video production, or screenwriting. With prior approval from the department, two units of Junior Year Away coursework may be used to satisfy a portion of this requirement.

I. Introductory

175b. The Art of Film (1)

An introductory exploration of central features of film aesthetics, including formal and stylistic elements: color, lighting, editing, sound, etc. Exposure to a wide spectrum of types of films, including: silent, abstract, non-narrative, documentary and genre films, and the artistic choices manifested by each. Subjects are treated topically rather than historically, and emphasis is placed on mastering key vocabulary. The department.

May not be used toward the Major requirements.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

180a. Writing About Movies (1)

This course focuses on the reviews of famous film critics such as Pauline Kael, David Denby, and Jonathan Rosenbaum, not with the goal of turning students into reviewers, but as a springboard for examining great prose (and great movies). We look at what gives their writing grace, style, passion, and a personal tone of voice, and at some of the classic and contemporary films they discuss. We also slowly branch out into other genres of writing about film: interviews, autobiographies, and critical essays, to explore the variety of ways writers share their love of film and offer interpretations of great films’ meaning and importance. Ms. Kozloff.

Open only to freshmen; satisfies college requirement for a Freshman Writing Seminar.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

181a. Chaplin and Keaton (1)

This freshman seminar investigates the art of silent film comedy through a close examination of the films of Charles Chaplin and Buster Keaton. Film critics today rank their films among the finest motion pictures ever produced. Both Chaplin and Keaton were clearly the authors of their movies, as they controlled all major conceptual and technical elements. In addition to viewing and discussing many of the short and feature- length films produced by Chaplin and Keaton, students read critical essays analyzing and interpreting these films, as well as theoretical works dealing with the nature of comedy. Students compose and revise weekly brief essays (two to four pages) and deliver a short oral presentation. As a final project, students complete a longer analytical paper (around ten pages) that explores specific visual comic elements in one of the feature-length films created by Charles Chaplin or Buster Keaton. Mr. Steerman.

Open only to freshmen; satisfies college requirement for a Freshman Writing Seminar.

Two 75-minute periods, plus outside screenings.

II. Intermediate

210a. World Cinema to 1945 (1)

An international history of film from its invention through the silent era and the coming of sound to mid-century. The course focuses on major directors, technological change, industrial organization, and the contributions of various national movements. In addition to the historical survey, this course introduces students to the major issues of classical film theory. The department.

Prerequisite: Film 175 strongly suggested but not required.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

211b. World Cinema After 1945 (1)

An international history of film from mid-century to the present day. The course focuses on major directors, technological changes, industrial organization, and the contributions of various national movements. In addition to the historical survey, this course explores the major schools of contemporary film theory, e.g., auteurism, semiology, Marxist theory, feminism. The department.

Prerequisite: Film 210, and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

212a. Genre: The Musical (1)

Examines the development of American film musicals from The Jazz Singerto Sweeney Todd and Les Misérables. The course looks at major stars such as Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, Gene Kelly, and Judy Garland, and the contributions of directors such as Vincente Minnelli and Bob Fosse. Students examine the interrelationships between Broadway and Hollywood, the influence of the rise and fall of the Production Code, the shaping hand of different studios, the tensions between narrative and spectacle, sincerity and camp. Reading assignments expose students to a wide range of literature about film, from production histories to feminist theory. Ms. Kozloff.

Prerequisite: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

214. Genre: The War Film (1)

An examination of how American films have represented World War I, World War II, the Vietnam War and the Gulf Wars. Films chosen include both those made while the conflicts rages (Bataan, 1942), and those made many years later (Saving Private Ryan, 1998, and Three Kings, 1999). This class focuses on such issues as: propaganda and patriotism, pacifism and sensationalism, the reliance on genre conventions and the role of changing film technologies. For comparison, we look also at documentaries, television, "home front" stories at war-time poetry, posters, and music. Reading assignments cover topics such as the government's Office of War Information, the influence of John Wayne, the racism of the Vietnam films, the ways in which the Iraq war movies have been influenced by the genre. Ms Kozloff.

Prerequisite: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Not offered in 2013/14.

215. Genre: Science Fiction (1)

The course surveys the history of science fiction film from its beginnings in the silent period to the advent of digital technologies. The "golden age" of the 50s, the emergence of a new kind of science-fiction film at the end of the 60s (Kubrick's 2001), and the "resurgence/revival" of science-fiction film in the late 70s-early 80s (Blade Runner, Alien) are given special attention. Topics include subgenres (end of the world, time travel, space exploration, robots, atomic energy), the relation of science-fiction films to their social context and their function in popular culture, the place of science in science-fiction, and the role of women in the genre. While passing mention is made of television science fiction, the course focuses on film.

Prerequisite: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods plus required weekly evening screenings.

Not offered in 2013/14.

216. Genre: Romantic Comedy (1)

This class studies the genre of romantic comedy in American film from the "screwball comedies" of the 1930s (It Happened One Night, Bringing Up Baby) to the resurgence of the genre in the 1990s and the 21st century. The course focuses on the work of major stars such as Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, and Meg Ryan, as well as the contribution of such directors as Ernst Lubitsch, George Cukor, Preston Sturges, Howard Hawks, Billy Wilder, or Nora Ephron. We place these films in the context of other representations of romance—such as Shakespeare's comedies—and in the context of the changes in American culture, particularly in the role of women. Readings lead students to a deeper understanding of the history of American film, genre, and the star system. Ms. Kozloff.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Prerequisite: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Not offered in 2013/14.

217b. Video Art (1)

(Same as Art 217) Video Art has for some time been an important medium for visual artists. It has taken its place along with and often in tandem with all of the major categories of art production. The students are expected to learn how to "speak" using Video technology. This course is an exploration of the scope and possibilities of this important medium. The students learn the technical expertise necessary to be able to produce work in this medium. Student work is periodically screened and discussed by the class and the teacher, so that relationships between video and how it is implemented to best serve the visual, conceptual and narrative aspects of the work is better understood. Regular screenings of videos and films provide students with a context of historical and contemporary practices in which to consider their own production.

Mr. McElnea.

Prerequisite: permission of the instructor; please see Liliana Aguis in the Department Office, T219.

Two 2-hour periods.

218b. Genre: The Western (1)

This course offers an historical and cultural exploration of the Western film genre. There is emphasis on the relationship between the Western and the central myths of the American experience. The changing nature of masculinity, the representation of violence, and the roles designated to women are addressed. The course examines Westerns directed by filmmakers D. W. Griffith, John Ford, Howard Hawks, George Stevens, John Huston, Fred Zinnemann, Sidney Poitier, Sam Peckinpah, and Clint Eastwood. Ms. Mask.

Prerequisites: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

220b. Chinese Film and Contemporary Fiction (1)

(Same as Chinese 220) An introduction to Chinese film through its adaptations of contemporary stories. Focus is on internationally well-known films by the fifth and sixth generation of directors since the late 1980s. Early Chinese films from the 1930s to the 1970s are also included in the screenings. The format of the course is to read a series of stories in English translations and to view their respective cinematic versions. The discussions concentrate on cultural and social aspects as well as on comparison of themes and viewpoints in the two genres. The interrelations between texts and visual images are also explored. Mr. Du.

Prerequisite: one course in language, literature, culture, film, drama, or Asian Studies, or permission of the instructor.

230. Women in Film (1)

This course both examines the representation of women on film from an international perspective, and explores the works of key international women directors. Issues addressed include: constructions of femininity, masculinity, and sexuality, and the mapping of intersections between gender, power, race, class, and nation. We then study women directors of feature films such as Kathryn Bigelow (USA), Julie Dash (USA), Mingmonkul Sonakul (Thailand), Deepa Mehta (India), Nan Triveni Achnas (Indonesia), Jane Campion (New Zealand), Chantal Akerman (Belgium), and Yasmin Ahmad (Malaysia). Readings are drawn from feminist (film) theory, post-colonial theory, genre theory, and cultural studies. Screenings may include Sweetie, Sepet, The Photograph, Fire, Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles, and Near Dark.

Prerequisite: one course in Film or Women's Studies.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Not offered in 2013/14.

231b. Minorities in the Media (1)

This course examines the dynamics of race, class, gender and sexuality as they are represented in American society. Throughout the semester, we will analyze films, television programs, videos and advertisements, as well as other mediated discourse, to assess the way categories of "minority" identity have been constructed in mainstream society. In addition to examining images of those persons collective known as “minorities,” we will consider the representation of those defined as “majority” Americans. In addition to scholarship by black British cultural theorists, African American scholars, critical race theorists and sociologists, this course enlists scholarship from the growing field of whiteness studies. Issues and topics may include “model minorities” (Henry Louis Gates, Jennifer Lopez, Rahm Emmanuel, Tiger Woods, Ellen DeGeneres, The Williams Sisters), global advertising, racial profiling, police brutality (Rodney King, Abner Louima, Amadou Diallo, Sean Bell), the Proposition 209 conflict, the WNBA, gay marriage, and the representation of the Middle East. Readings, screenings and papers required. Ms. Mask.

Prerequisite: Film175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods, plus outside screenings.

232. African American Cinema (1)

(Same as Africana Studies 232) This course provides a survey of the history and theory of African American representation in cinema. It begins with the silent films of Oscar Micheaux and examines early Black cast westerns (Harlem Rides the Range, The Bronze Buckaroo, Harlem on the Prairie) and musicals (St. Louis Blues, Black and Tan, Hi De Ho, Sweethearts of Rhythm). Political debate circulating around cross over stars (Paul Robeson, Sidney Poitier, Dorothy Dandridge, Eartha Kitt, and Harry Belafonte) are central to the course. Special consideration is given to Blaxploitation cinema of the seventies (Shaft, Coffy, Foxy Brown, Cleopatra Jones) in an attempt to understand its impact on filmmakers and the historical contexts for contemporary filmmaking. The course covers "Los Angeles Rebellion" filmmakers such as Julie Dash, Charles Burnett, and Haile Gerima. Realist cinema of the 80's and 90's (Do the Right Thing, Boyz N the Hood, Menace II Society, and Set it off),is examined before the transition to Black romantic comedies, family films, and genre pictures (Coming to America, Love and Basketball, Akeelah and the Bee, The Great Debaters). Ms. Mask.

Prerequisite: Film 210 and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Not offered in 2013/14.

233. The McCarthy Era and Film (1)

This class focuses both on the history of anti-communist involvement with the American film industry and on the reflection of this troubled era in post-war films. We trace the factors that led to The House on Un-American Activities Committee's investigation of communist influence in Hollywood, the case of the Hollywood Ten, the operation of the blacklist and its final demise at the end of the 1950s. We look at films overtly taking sides in this ideological conflict, such as the anti-Communist I Was a Communist for the FBI and the pro-labor Salt of the Earth, as well as the indirect allegories in film noirs and science fiction. Reading assignments are drawn from a wide range of sources, including HUAC transcripts, government documents, production histories, and genre studies. The course concludes with a look at how more contemporary films such asGood Night and Good Luck have sought to frame our understanding of this era. Ms. Kozloff.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Prerequisite: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Not offered in 2013/14.

235. Celebrity and Power: Stardom in Contemporary Culture (1)

Celebrity fascinates Americans. It informs popular culture, professional sport and national politics. Yet what defines celebrity? How are stars manufactured by the Culture Industry? Why is the ubiquitous cult of celebrity so important in contemporary Western culture and across global mediascapes? Through classic and contemporary writings, the course examines stardom and various brands of star charisma. We interrogate conventional forms of celebrity power as well as the conversion of entertainment industry charisma into forms of political charisma (i.e., the careers of Ronald Reagan, Clint Eastwood, Arnold Schwarzenegger). As intertextual signs, stars reveal the instabilities, ambiguities and contradictions within a given culture. The changing configuration of American society is revealed in an examination of celebrity and stardom as social phenomena. This course transverses from Mary Pickford to Oprah Winfrey and beyond. Readings, screenings and writing assignments required. Ms. Mask.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Prerequisite: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Not offered in 2013/14.

236. African Cinema: A Continental Survey (1)

African national cinemas reflect the rich, complex history of the continent. These films from lands as diverse as Chad, Senegal, and South Africa reveal the various ways filmmakers have challenged the representation of Africa and Africans while simultaneously revising conventional cinematic syntax. This survey course examines the internal gaze of African-born auteurs like Ousmane Sembene (La Noir De, Xala, Mandabi), Djbril Diop Mambety (Hyenes), Desire Ecare (Faces of Women), Manthia Diawara (Conakry Kas), and Mahmat-Saleh Haroun (Bye-Bye Africa). It places these films alongside the external gaze of practitioners Euzan Palcy (A Dry White Season), Jean-Jacques Annaud (Noir et Blancs en Couleur) and Raoul Peck (Lumumba). The films of documentary filmmakers Anne Laure Folly, Ngozi Onwurah and Pratibah Parmaar are also examined. This course utilizes the post-colonial film theory and scholarship of Imruh Bakari, Mbye Cham, Nwachukwu Frank Ukadike and Manthia Diawara. Screenings, readings and papers required. Ms. Mask.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Prerequisite: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Not offered in 2013/14.

237. Indian National Cinema (1)

(Same as Asian Studies 237) This course is designed to introduce students to the dynamic and diverse film traditions of India. It examines how these texts imagine and image the Indian nation and problematizes the “national” through an engagement with regional cinemas within India as well as those produced within the Indian diaspora. Readings are drawn from contemporary film theory, post-colonial theory, and Indian cultural studies. Screenings may include Meghe Dhaka Tara / The Cloud-Capped Star (Ritwik Ghatak, 1960), Mother India (Mehboob Khan, 1957),Shatranj Ke Khilari / The Chess Players (Satyajit Ray, 1977), Sholay (Ramesh Sippy, 1975), Bombay (Mani Ratnam, 1995), Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham/ Happiness and Tears (Karan Johar, 2001), Bride and Prejudice (Gurinder Chadha, 2004), and Mission Kashmir (Vidhu Vinod Chopra, 2000). Ms. Harvey.

Prerequisites: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Not offered in 2013/14.

238b. Music in Film (1)

(Same as Music 238) A study of music in sound cinema from the 1920s to the present. The course focuses on the expressive, formal, and semiotic functions that film music serves, either as sound experienced by the protagonists, or as another layer of commentary to be heard only by the viewer, or some mixture of the two. Composers studied include Max Steiner, Bernard Herrmann, Jerry Goldsmith, Danny Elfman and others as well as film scores that rely upon a range of musical resources including classical, popular, and non-Western music. Specific topics to be considered this semester include music in film noir and the movie musical. Mr. Mann.

Prerequisite: one course in music (not performance) or film.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

239. Contemporary Southeast Asian Cinemas (1)

(Same as Asian Studies 239) This survey course is designed to introduce students to the dynamic and diverse film texts emerging from and about Southeast Asia. It examines how these texts imagine and image Southeast Asia and/or particular nations within the region. More specifically, the course focuses on the themes of urban spaces and memory/trauma as they operate within texts about Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Timor-Leste. The course reading material is designed to provide (1) theoretical insights, (2) general socio-cultural and/or political overviews, and (3) more specific analyses of film texts and/or filmmakers. Ms. Harvey.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Not offered in 2013/14.

255. Italian Cinema in English (1)

(Same as Italian 255) Close analysis of the narrative and visual styles of Michelangelo Antonioni, Bernardo Bertolucci, Lina Wertmüller, Gianni Amelio and Nanni Moretti, in the context of post war Italian cinema and culture. Theoretical literature on these directors and on approaches to the interpretation of cinematic works aid us in addressing questions of style and of political and social significance. Ms. Blumenfeld.

No prerequisites.

Open to sophomores, juniors, and seniors. May be counted towards the Italian major.

Two 75-minute periods and two film screenings.

Not offered in 2013/14.

260. Documentary: History and Aesthetics (1)

Beginning with an exploration of film pioneers such as Robert Flaherty and Margaret Mead, the course also examines the impact of John Grierson on documentary production in both Great Britain and Canada. In addition, the development of cinema verité is traced through the work of such filmmakers as Jean Rouch, Richard Leacock, Robert Drew, D. A. Pennebaker, Frederick Wiseman, and the Maysles Brothers. Other topics might include city-symphonies, domestic ethnographies, and mockumentaries. Screeings may include: Nanook of the North (Robert Flaherty, 1922), Chronique d'un ete (Paris 1960) (Jean Rouch and Edgar Morin, 1961), Primary (Robert Drew, 1960) Jane (D.A. Pennebaker, 1962),Boxing Gym (Frederick Wiseman, 2010), and This is Spinal Tap (Rob Reiner, 1984). Ms. Harvey.

Prerequisite: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Not offered in 2013/14.

280a. The Middle East in Cinema and Media (1)

(Same as Media Studies 280) This course looks at Middle Eastern electronic media and film to ask questions about contemporary culture, social life and politics in the region. Using the events of the “Arab Spring” and its aftermath as touchstones, we investigate such topics as globalization, mediated identity, gender, and mediated entertainment. While most of our focus is on the Arab countries, we also examine cultural material from Iran, Israel, and Turkey. We watch films, follow blogs, and read popular and academic material on the region. Mr. Elseewi.

Prerequisites: Film 175 or 210 and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods, plus outside screenings.

283b. Sophomore Production: Story and Screen(1)

This is a course about becoming a better finder, reader, and teller of visual stories. Through a series of exercises and video projects we cover every aspect of production, from the smallest and most technical aspects of lighting and shooting to the big-picture issues of production ethics and theory. Over the course of the semester we are videographers, sound designers, editors, writers, directors, producers, theorists, and critics—and we discover how these roles often overlap.

Along with creating new projects of our own we reflect on projects already done by professionals and other students. Every week we sample some of the masterpieces of cinema but we also occasionally look at shorter journalistic videos, experimental films, television programs, and music videos. Mr. Riccobono.

Prerequisite: Film 210. No technical experience is required.

One 2-hour period.

285a. Emotional Engagement with Film (1)

(Same as Media Studies and Psychology 285) While movies engage our emotions in psychologically significant ways, scholarship on the psychological allure and impact of film has existed primarily at the interdisciplinary margins. This course aims to bring such scholarship into the foreground. We begin with a careful examination of the appeal and power of narrative, as well as processes of identification and imagined intimacy with characters, before taking a closer analytical look at specific film genres (e.g., melodrama, horror, comedy, action, social commentary) both in their own right and in terms of their psychological significance (e.g., why do we enjoy sad movies? How do violent movies influence viewer aggression? How might socially conscious films inspire activism or altruism?) In addition to delving into theoretical and empirical papers, a secondary goal of the course is to engage students as collaborators; brainstorm and propose innovative experimental methods for testing research questions and hypotheses that emerge in step with course materials. Ms. Greenwood and Ms. Kozloff.

Prerequisites: For Psychology majors - Psychology 100; For Film majors - Film 175 or Film 210; For Media Studies majors - Media Studies 160.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

286a. TV History and Criticism (1)

(Same as Media Studies 286) This course is a survey of the history, technology, regulation, audience, and economics of television and related electronic media from the 1920s until the present. This class focuses on both the historical development of the medium and its texts as well as on the theoretical frameworks scholars have used to study television. The course approaches television primarily through the lens of its relationship with American culture with an ongoing focus on issues of race, gender, class, and the political process. Mr. Elseewi.

Prerequisite: Film 210 or Media Studies 160.

Two 75-minute periods, plus outside screenings.

290a or b. Field Work (1/2 or 2)

To be elected in consultation with the adviser and the Office of Field Work.

298a or b. Independent Work (1/2 or 1)

To be elected in consultation with the adviser.

III. Advanced

300a or b. Film Research Thesis (1)

An academic thesis in film history or theory, written under the supervision of a member of the department. Since writing a thesis during fall semester is preferable, film majors should talk to their advisers spring of junior year. In Film, a research thesis is recommended, especially for those students not writing a Screenplay Thesis or enrolled in Documentary workshop, but it is not required. Members of the Department.

Prerequisites: Film 210/211, two additional courses in film history and theory, and permission of the instructor.

301a or b. Film Screenplay Thesis (1)

The creation of a feature-length original screenplay. Open only to students electing the concentration in film. Senior status required. Students wishing to write a screenplay instead of a research thesis must have produced work of distinction in Film 317 (Intro to Screenwriting) and Film 319 (Screenwriting). Mr. Fligelman.

Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

317a. Introduction to Screenwriting (1)

(Same as Drama 317) Study of dramatic construction as it applies to film, plus practice in story development and screenwriting. Mr. Fligelman.

Prerequisites: Drama 102 or Film 210 and permission of the instructor.

Writing sample required two weeks before preregistration.

Open only to juniors and seniors.

One 2-hour period plus outside screenings.

319b. Screenwriting (1)

An in-depth exploration of the screenplay as a dramatic form and a workshop aimed at the development, writing, and rewriting of a feature-length screenplay. Students study the work of noted screenwriters and are required to complete a feature-length screenplay as their final project in the course. Open only to students who have produced work of distinction in Film 317. Mr. Fligelman.

One 2-hour period plus outside screenings.

Prerequisites: Film 210/211, Drama or Film 317, and permission of the instructor.

320a. Filmmaking (1)

This course concentrates on a theoretical and practical examination of the art of visual communication on 16 mm. film. Assignments emphasize developing, visualizing, and editing narratives from original ideas. Instructors may emphasize narrative projects. Mr. Robinson.

Fees: see section on fees.

Prerequisites: Film 210/211 and permission of the instructor.

One 2-hour period plus 3-hour lab.

321b. Narrative Filmmaking (1)

Each student writes a non-dialogue narrative from their original idea. Working in partnerships of two, each student directs and does sound on his or her narrative while doing the camera and editing on his or her's partner's film. Lighting and logistics are a shared responsibility. Shot in 16mm. Editing utilizes Final Cut Pro. Mr. Robinson, TBA.

Fees: see section on fees.

Prerequisites: Film 320 and permission of the instructor.

One 2-hour period plus 3-hour lab.

325a. Writing the Short Film (1)

Students learn the process of developing original, twenty minute narrative screenplays. Scripts produced in Film 327 are selected from those created in Film 325. Must be taken concurrently with Film 326. Mr. Robinson, TBA.

Prerequisites: Film 320 plus Film 321 and permission of the instructor.

One 3-hour period.

326a. Documentary Workshop (1)

This course addresses the aesthetic, ethical and theoretical issues specific to the documentary genre as students explore a variety of documentary styles. Student crews make twenty-minute documentaries in HD digital that explore in depth a person, place, event, or an issue. Students learn advanced video and sound-recording techniques, using professional grade digital cameras, sound recorders and microphones. Post-production is done on Final Cut Pro. Mr. Robinson, TBA.

Fees: see section on fees.

Prerequisites: Film 320, 321 and permission of the instructor.

One 3-hour period plus 3-hour laboratory.

327b. Narrative Workshop (1)

Student crews create twenty-minute 16mm sync/sound narrative films from original student scripts written in Film 325. Individual members of each crew are responsible for the major areas of production and post- production: direction, camera, editing, and sound. The projects are shot on color negative film and edited digitally using Final Cut Pro. Students wishing to compete for directing positions in Film 327 must have completed Film 325. Mr. Robinson, TBA.

Fees: See sections on fees.

Prerequisite: Film 326 and permission of the instructor.

One 3-hour period plus 3- hour lab.

379. Computer Animation: Art, Science and Criticism (1)

(Same as Art, Computer Science, and Media Studies 379) An interdisciplinary course in Computer Animation aimed at students with previous experience in Computer Science, Studio Art, or Media Studies. The course introduces students to mathematical and computational principles and techniques for describing the shape, motion and shading of three-dimensional figures in Computer Animation. It introduces students to artistic principles and techniques used in drawing, painting and sculpture, as they are translated into the context of Computer Animation. It also encourages students to critically examine Computer Animation as a medium of communication. Finally, the course exposes students to issues that arise when people from different scholarly cultures attempt to collaborate on a project of mutual interest. The course is structured as a series of animation projects interleaved with screenings and classroom discussions. Mr. Ellman, Mr. Roseman.

Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

Offered alternate years.

Two 2-hour periods.

Not offered in 2013/14.

392a and b. Research Seminar in Film History and Theory (1)

This course is designed as an in-depth exploration of either a given author or a theoretical topic. Students contribute to the class through research projects and oral presentations. Their work culminates in lengthy research papers. Because topics change, students are permitted (encouraged) to take this course more than once. Preference is given to film majors who must take this class during their senior year; junior majors and others admitted if space permits.

Topic for 2013/14a: Artist, Auteur: Spike Lee. The son of a musician and a teacher, Shelton Jackson Lee was born in Atlanta, Georgia. Nicknamed "Spike", he grew up in a household that valued education as well as the arts. With the release of his first feature film, Lee initiated another cinematic revolution. He demonstrated to Hollywood studios that serious contemporary African-American films were not only commercially viable, they were also profitable. His success has created opportunity for other writers, directors, actors and technicians. Over the last twenty years Spike Lee has directed an array of challenging, innovative and provocative features, documentaries and commercials. The themes embedded in his work are often culled from news headlines, making him one of the most politically engaged filmmakers of his generation. This course is a senior seminar in which the films of Lee are rigorously examined. Ms. Mask.

Prerequisites: Film 210/211, two additional units in film history and theory, and permission of instructor.

One 3-hour period, plus film screenings.

Topic for 2013/14b: 9/11 in Film and Popular Culture. This class examines the representations of 9/11 in film and popular culture and the impact of these representations on a variety of social formations. Using various lenses such as political economy, cultural studies, and postcolonial studies we analyze American and global society in the post 9/11 “age of terror”. We pose such questions as how are race, gender, religion and social class brought to bear in 9/11 representations. How are national and personal identities put into play in 9/11 cultural production? What kinds of political, ethnic and ideological groups are involved in representing 9/11? What is the role of trauma in contemporary popular culture? How has the representation of 9/11 contributed to a surveillance society? How has 9/11 affected us as individuals? Mr. Elseewi.

Prerequisites: Film 210/211, two additional units in film history and theory, and permission of the instructor.

One 3-hour period, plus film screenings.

399a or b. Senior Independent Work (1/2 or 1)

To be elected in consultation with the adviser.