• <div style="background-image:url(/live/image/gid/23/width/1600/height/300/crop/1/29892_cinema_studies.rev.1450297833.png)"/>

Cinema Studies

Course Descriptions

  • CINE 175: Introduction to Film Studies
    This course addresses basic topics in cinema studies, including: cinema technique, film production style, the basic language of film criticism, genres of cinema, movements from the history of cinema, and film criticism. Many topics are addressed through careful analysis of particularly important and representative films and directors. No prerequisites.
    Cross-listed as: AMER 175
  • CINE 185: Film and Religion
    Viewing films as meaningful texts, this course examines the perspectives offered by Asian and American filmmakers on such religious questions as: What does it mean to be human? How does death inform the living of life? How do values shape relationships? What is community and how is it created? What is ethical behavior? The range of films explored here function as vehicles for entering religious worldviews, communicating societal values, and probing different responses to the question of how to live a meaningful life. No prerequisites. Intended for first-year students and sophomores. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement.)

    Cross-listed as: RELG 185, ASIA 185
  • CINE 201: Digital Filmmaking
    This course gives students experience in narrative film production through use of practical projects. The course also provides an understanding of the basic terms and elements of narrative films. Students are introduced to the preproduction, production and post-production steps of narrative filmmaking while they explore the fundamentals of narrative film structure and production. Prerequisite: CINE 175.
  • CINE 230: Exploring French Lit thru Film
    (French Literature through Film) This course, taught in English (with an option for French majors to complete reading and writing in French), will examine French literary works, both historical and contemporary, through a variety of cinematic examples taken from French films. This course will compare the expression of theme, character, and plot structure in written literature (plays and narratives) and in corresponding cinematic adaptations. The course will also address whether the author's literary style is reflected in or displaced by the cinematic style of French 'auteurs' (film directors) studied. The question of translation across genres (literature to film), across language and culture (example of American remakes), and across history (a historical period depicted in a modern cinematic era) will also be discussed. No prerequisite. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement. )
    Cross-listed as: FREN 230
  • CINE 231: French Culture through Film
    (French Culture through Film) This course, taught in English, examines contemporary French cultural perceptions through a variety of cinematic examples taken from French films. Cultural analysis will include discussions of French history, literature, politics, geography, and music. In addition, the topic of 'remaking culture' through film is addressed, as the current wave of cinematic remakes invites cross-cultural comparisons between the United States and France. The course will examine major French directors and their cinematic portrayals of the French, as well as documentaries and filmed interviews, and will analyze the 'authenticity' of the portrait they produce of French society. Prerequisite: FREN 212 or equivalent. Not open to students who have completed FREN 338: Cinema Francais. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement.)
    Cross-listed as: FREN 231
  • CINE 232: Chinese Cinema
    This course provides a historical, critical, and theoretical survey of Chinese cinema, broadly defined to include films from Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. We will look at the specific political, social, economic, technological and aesthetic factors that have influenced the shape and character of Chinese cinema over the last century. We will discuss a range of works by internationally directors, including Zhang Yimou, Feng Xiaogang, Stephen Chow, Ang Lee, etc. As this course serves as a general introduction to Chinese film, it is intended for students who have little or no knowledge of China. All films screened for the course have English subtitles, so no knowledge of the Chinese language is required. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement).
    Cross-listed as: CHIN 232, ASIA 232
  • CINE 236: Latin American Film
    Taught in English. An interdisciplinary study of Latin American film, from multiple perspectives: artistic, historical, political, and socio-economic. This course will highlight the artistic achievements of Latin American filmmakers from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Mexico. We will use selected readings from original works for films that are based on fiction. A number of films have been Academy Award nominees or winners. Further readings will include a history of Latin American cinema, movie reviews, and interviews with directors. The course will scrutinize the links among cultural phenomena, socio-political events, and the art of filmmaking. No prerequisites. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement.)
    Cross-listed as: SPAN 236, LNAM 236
  • CINE 240: Shakespeare on Film
    This course will focus on major cinematic adaptations of Shakespeare's plays, with attention both to the original texts and to the process of transferring them to the new medium by film directors. We will pay special attention to plays that have been filmed a number of times, so that we can develop useful comparisons: Richard III (Olivier, Loncraine), Romeo and Juliet (Zeffirelli, Luhrmann, Shakespeare in Love), Henry V (Olivier, Branagh), Hamlet (Olivier, Zeffirelli, Almereyda), and Macbeth (Polanski, Kurzel). Major goals will be to develop our ability to do close readings of both the original texts and the films, to do creative film adaptation projects, and to develop effective ways of expressing both our analytical and our creative ideas. No prerequisites.
    Cross-listed as: THTR 240, ENGL 239
  • CINE 258: Spike Lee and Black Aesthetics
    As one of the greatest filmmakers of all time, Spike Lee is both loathed and loved. His films challenge the stereotypes and paternalistic assumptions about African Americans that have become sacrosanct in America's popular imagination. We will explore how the aesthetic representation of race, class, and gender in Spike Lee's filmography have helped create a new genre of film called African American noir. In so doing, we will watch several of Spike Lee's films, documentary projects, and television ads. Ultimately, our goal will be to appreciate Lee's cinematic technique, examine his critique of white supremacy, and consider the cultural and historical events that have shaped his artistic vision. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement.)
    Cross-listed as: PHIL 258, AFAM 258
  • CINE 266: Music in Film
    Music has played an important part of the movie-going experience since the beginnings of the film industry in the 1890's, and the blending of music and drama has deeper roots still. This course charts the development of music and sound in film, from these deep roots through the mis-named silent-movie era and on to the great film composers of the twentieth century and today. Students will learn the fundamental elements of a film score, investigate how a film composer works, and develop a vocabulary for describing and assessing film music. No prior knowledge of music or film history is necessary.
    Cross-listed as: MUSC 266, AMER 266
  • jump to top
  • CINE 280: Subversive Cinema
    (Subversive Cinema: Pictures at a Revolution) This course explores the connections between movies and social politics with an emphasis on subversive and cult films. We view films such as A Clockwork Orange, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Born in Flames, Bonnie & Clyde, and Dear White People. We explore the nature of cinematic revolution and its relationship to various historical moments. We seek to answer questions about visual culture and its relationship to our collective imagination. We consider the place of movies in how we consider themes such as gender, race, oppression, sexual politics, and democracy. No prerequisites.
  • CINE 286: Soc Structure & Culture thru Film
    (Social Structure and Culture Through Film) This course combines a historical survey of narrative films and an overview of international schools of filmmaking and couches them in a sociological framework. The questions of treatment of the other (races and nations), totalitarianism, revolution, militarism, deviance, various views of human nature, and utopias and distopias portrayed in cinema will be addressed. Prerequisite: SOAN 110. Required: an additional weekly lab session for viewing movies. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement.)
    Cross-listed as: SOAN 286
  • CINE 301: Romantic Comedies & Phil of Love
    (Romantic Comedies and Philosophy of Love) Why do we like to watch romantic comedies? What's satisfying about them, even when they're not great films? Film theorist Leo Braudy claimed that 'genre [film] ? always involves a complex relation between the compulsions of the past and the freedoms of the present. ? [They] affect their audience ? by their ability to express the warring traditions in society and the social importance of understanding convention.' In this course, following Braudy, we will investigate the relationship between the film genre of romantic comedy and age-old thinking about love, marriage, and romance. We'll read some ancient and modern philosophy of love, as well as some relevant film theory, and watch and discuss an array of romantic comedies, trying to unpack what we really believe about love. Prerequisite: One Philosophy course or permission of the instructor. ('Genre: The Conventions of Connection,' Film Theory and Criticism, eds. Leo Braudy and Marshall Cohen. New York: Oxford U. Press, 538).
    Cross-listed as: PHIL 301, GSWS 301
  • CINE 302: Philos Issues in Documentary Film
    (Philosophical Issues in Documentary Film) What is a documentary film? What does it mean for a movie to be 'non-fiction'? In this course, we will view and discuss a number of documentary films, e.g., those of Robert Flaherty, Leni Riefenstahl, Claude Lanzmann, Albert Maysles, Erroll Morris, and Seth Gordon. We'll also read some aesthetic and film theory, to try to understand what about these films is and is not 'true,' 'good' or 'beautiful.' Prerequisite: One Philosophy course or permission of the instructor.
    Cross-listed as: PHIL 302
  • CINE 304: Philosophy of Film
    In this course, we will consider the aesthetics of moving pictures: What is most "cinematic" about cinema? What is its relation to reality? Is cinema "high art" or "low art?" What are the secrets behind "movie magic"? What is the function of genre in film? Readings may include Eisenstein, Arnheim, Kracauer, Braudy, Bazin, Cavell, Carroll, Bordwell. Of course, we will consider application of theory by viewing a number of movies. Prerequisite: One Philosophy or Cinema Studies course.
    Cross-listed as: PHIL 304
  • CINE 320: Acting for the Camera
    This course is an exploration of the acting techniques required in film, television, and other media. Knowledge and understanding of film techniques, vocabulary, and genre styles is accomplished through viewing and analysis of modern and contemporary film works from the early twentieth century to the present by noted authors and filmmakers. Acting projects center on the performance of scenes, monologues, voice-overs, and commercials. Other projects include written script and character analysis, daily actor journals, and in-depth critiques of self and peer performances. Papers of analysis on films viewed in and out of class and other research projects including adaptation of texts and acting styles for the screen are also required. Prerequisites: THTR 120, and either THTR 220 or permission of the instructor.
    Cross-listed as: THTR 320
  • CINE 336: Modern German Film
    In our overview of German film from its inception to the opening of the 21st century, students examine and discuss famous as well as off-beat masterpieces of cinema from the perspectives of political and cultural history as well as specifically cinematic aesthetics. The course views and debates films (subtitled in English) by such noted filmmakers as Lang, Fassbinder, Herzog, Schlöndorff, Wenders, Holland, Verhoeven and Fatih Akin. Readings, lectures, and discussions are in English, and the course encourages comparisons with films from other cultures, including popular Hollywood cinema. Prerequisite: a course that develops analytic-interpretive skills, such as, but not limited to: ENGL 210, ENGL 211, ENGL 212, ENGL 216, ENGL 217, COMM 255, or COMM 275; or permission of instructor. (Offered as a Tutorial.)
    Cross-listed as: GERM 333
  • CINE 337: Cine e Historia en América Latina
    The course examines the ways that movies view historical events and periods, while at the same time shaping public perception of those events and periods in Latin America. Examples of topics are the Conquest of the Americas, the legacy of Peron, the Castro and post-Castro eras in Cuba, the Catholic Church in Mexico, dictatorship and democracy in Brazil and Chile, and narco-trafficking. The basic format will be discussion with occasional interactive lectures. Readings will include essays on cinema and history. Students will view films mostly in DVD format from several countries. Assignments will include short essays, oral presentations, and a midterm and a final exam. Prerequisite: SPAN 300 or 305 or 306 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.(Counts toward the Spanish major and minor. Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement.)
    Cross-listed as: SPAN 333, LNAM 333
  • CINE 338: Cinema Francais
    This interdisciplinary course provides an overview of French cinematic history, with an emphasis on how French films and movements represent various social and political concerns of their time period. Film will be studied as an art form and cultural text to be interpreted, and films by major directors will illustrate key cinematic concepts and themes. Readings will address the socio-political context, from French film beginnings to the complexity of post-colonial French identity and cultural globalization depicted in contemporary French and Francophone films. This course is discussion-based,with occasional lectures, is taught in French, and will acquaint students with cinematic terms used to interpret the genre. Prerequisite: FREN212 or equivalent. Not open to students who have completed FREN 333: French Culture Through Film in English. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity requirement.)
    Cross-listed as: FREN 338
  • CINE 339: Cine Español
    An interdisciplinary study of Spanish film, from multiple perspectives: artistic, historical, political, and socio-economic. This course will highlight the artistic achievements of Spanish filmmakers from several periods, including Luis Buñuel, Carlos Saura, and Pedro Almodovar. Readings will include essays on film history, the language of cinema, movie reviews, and interviews with directors. The course will scrutinize the links among cultural phenomena, socio-political events, and the art of filmmaking. Films will be treated as complex aesthetic objects whose language does not merely photograph socio-historical reality but transfigures it. The course will also consider Spain in its broadest Iberian sense and will include films in Catalan, Galician, and Portuguese. Classes will be based mainly on discussion interspersed with occasional lectures. Prerequisite: SPAN 300 or 305 or 306 or equivalent, or permission of instructor. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement.)
    Cross-listed as: SPAN 334, LNAM 334
  • jump to top
  • CINE 341: Cine Latinoamericano
    An interdisciplinary study of Latin American film, from multiple perspectives: artistic, historical, political, and socio-economic. This course will highlight the artistic achievements of Latin American filmmakers from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Mexico. We will use selected readings from original works for films that are based on fiction. A number of films have been Academy Award nominees or winners. Further readings will include a history of Latin American cinema, movie reviews, and interviews with directors. The course will scrutinize the links among cultural phenomena, socio-political events, and the art of filmmaking. Films will be treated as complex aesthetic objects whose language does not merely photograph socio-historical reality but transfigures it. Classes will be based mainly on discussion interspersed with occasional lectures. Prerequisite: SPAN 300 or 305 or 306 or equivalent, or permission of instructor. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement.)
    Cross-listed as: SPAN 338, LNAM 338
  • CINE 343: Video Art
    This course combines digital video production techniques with a seminar-style investigation into the use of film and video as an art form. Students will use Final Cut Studio software in a Mac-platform computer lab to produce several independent and collaborative creative video projects addressing ideas crucial to the development of video art, and pertinent to our current connections to technology and life, communication and entertainment. Students will become familiar with common themes, tools and techniques utilized in this changing, but nonetheless historically grounded medium as they find their own creative voices and engage the rapidly growing community of digital video producers and consumers. Prerequisite: ART 130 or ART 142 or both COMM 112 and COMM 275.
    Cross-listed as: ART 343
  • CINE 360: History and the Moving Image
    This course explores the role of moving images (film, television, internet) in understanding history as both collective process and contested interpretation. The course will integrate a discussion of recent historical methodologies concerning moving images, with examples from a variety of forms, including historical epics, documentaries, propaganda, television series, literary adaptations, and biographies. Special emphasis will be placed upon the ambiguities of historical context, including the time of production, the period depicted, and changing audiences over time. Topics include: 'Feudal Codes of Conduct in Democratic Societies,' 'Film as Foundation Myth for Totalitarian Ideologies' and 'Situation Comedy of the 1970s as Social History.' Prerequisite: Two history courses or permission of the instructor.
    Cross-listed as: HIST 360, AMER 340
  • CINE 370: Film Editing Theories and Practice
    This course focuses on different theories and approaches in film editing. It examines the techniques and aesthetic principles of editing of various filmmakers in film history. This class also provides practical experiences for students, who are assigned creative video editing projects. Prerequisite: CINE 175.
  • CINE 376: Queer Cinema
    This course will focus on queer cinema--films that not only challenge prevailing sexual norms, but also seek to undermine the categories of gender and sex. Gender and sexual norms are perpetuated and challenged through notions of visibility, a key tactic in the fight for societal acceptance and civil rights. How sexuality is made visible and invisible will serve as a central focus in our analysis of queer film and media, focusing primarily on explicit representations of GLBTQ characters. Through feminist and queer theory, film theory and cultural criticism, we will analyze the contested relationships between spectators and texts, identity and commodities, realism and fantasy, activism and entertainment, desire and politics. Prerequisite: COMM 255, COMM 275, or permission of instructor. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement.)
    Cross-listed as: COMM 376, GSWS 376
  • CINE 380: Cine, Literatura y Sociedad Amr Lat
    (Cine, Literatura y Sociedad América Latina ) This course is an interdisciplinary study of Latin American societies, focusing on film and literature from multiple perspectives: artistic, historical, political, and socio-economic. The seminar will highlight the magisterial artistic achievements of Latin American novelists, short story writers, and playwrights and film adaptations of their works. It will scrutinize the links between socio-political events and artistic production. Seminar materials will include films, chapters from novels, short stories, plays, and readings on film, social issues, and politics. The basic format will be discussion with occasional interactive lectures. Assignments will include short essays, oral presentations, and a final exam. Prerequisite: SPAN 300 or 305 or 306 or equivalent, or permission of instructor. (Meets GEC Cultural Diversity Requirement.)
    Cross-listed as: SPAN 380, LNAM 380
  • CINE 381: The Movies of Wilder and Hitchcock
    ("How Beautifully Made": The Movies of Billy Wilder and Alfred Hitchcock.) In June 1960, Alfred Hitchcock sent this letter to Billy Wilder: "I saw THE APARTMENT the other day. I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed it and how beautifully made. I felt this so much that I was impelled to drop you this note." Two meticulous directors with dark senses of humor and interest in the darker sides of the human psyche, Wilder and Hitchcock will help us understand how great movies are made. In this course we will watch, read about, and discuss several of each director's best movies, comparing and contrasting as we go. No prerequisites.
  • CINE 382: Reel Journalism: Hollywood & News
    (Reel Journalism: Hollywood and the Newsroom.) The news media has been a popular subject for Hollywood since the inception of filmmaking. Whether it's the story pursued by journalists or reporters' own narratives, movies such as Citizen Kane, All The President's Men, Good Night & Good Luck, and, most recently, Spotlight won awards, entertained millions, and grossed millions more at the box office. In this course, we observe how ethical standards are portrayed on the big screen and explore filmmaking techniques.and metaphors. Students also will gain perspectives of important U.S. history that continue to be relative in current events. No prerequisites.