LECTURE AND SCREENING SCHEDULE:
class: (September 26) Introduction.
(October 1-3) Early Cinema
Lumière Brothers early films (incl. Train Entering the Station,
Waterer Watered, ); George Meliès films (incl. Trip to
the Moon, Conquest of the North Pole);
Edison films (in class, incl. Spanish
American War films and others).
(NB: For more details of this screening, click
Introduction to course
and concepts, basic terminology. Pre-history of cinema; early cinema
technologies; the cinema of attractions; cinema and empire.
Bordwell and Thompson, Chapter One, Mechanics of the Movies,
2-8; Early Cinema, 400-02.
Kristen Whissel, Uncle Tom, Goldilocks, and the Rough Riders:
Early Cinemas Encounter with Empire. Screen 40 (1999): 384-404.
Gunning, Tom. The Cinema of Attractions: Early Film, its Spectator,
and the Avant-Garde. Early Cinema: Space, Frame, Narrative. Ed.
Thomas Elsaesser. London: BFI, 1990, 56-62.
Film, Form, and Culture (CD-ROM): Introduction.
Kolker, Chapter 1.
(October 8-10) The shot and mise-en-scene
The Last Laugh, dir. F.W. Murnau, 1924. (91min)
Introduction to the shot and mise-en-scene; German expressionism and
modernism; construction of cinematic space.
Bordwell and Thompson, Chapter Six, The Shot: Mise-en-Scene,
156-84; German Expressionism, 406-08.
Film, Form, and Culture (CD-ROM): Mise-en-scene; Genre (German
Kolker 36-38; 52-62; 186-88
(October 15-17) The beginnings of classical cinema
1 due 7pm, October 16 (at screening).
The Life of an American Fireman,dir. Edwin S. Porter, 1902.
The Great Train Robbery, dir. Edwin S. Porter, 1903. (10min)
The Lonedale Operator, dir. D.W. Griffith (10min).
The General, dir. Buster Keaton (80min).
film narrative; the beginnings of classical cinema; cross-cutting, narrative,
and Thompson, Chapter One, Bringing the Film to the Spectator,
8-14; Chapter Three, Narrative as a Formal System, 59-76;
The Development of the Classical Hollywood Cinema, 402-06.
(October 22-24) Other early models: Soviet Montage
Battleship Potemkin, dir. Sergei Eisenstein, 1925. (67min)
Soviet montage; alternatives to continuity editing; the shot; dialectical
Bordwell and Thompson, Soviet Montage, 412-15; Chapter Eight,
The Relation of Shot-to-Shot Editing, 249-62; Alternatives
to Continuity Editing, 278-90.
Film, Form, and Culture (CD-ROM): Montage.
(October 29-31) Classical Hollywood Cinema I
Stagecoach, dir. John Ford, 1939. (100min)
Classical cinema, ideology, and genre (the western); continuity editing;
auteur theory; race, colonialism, and Hollywood film.
Bordwell and Thompson, Chapter One, Making the Movie: Film Production,
14-28; Chapter Two, Film Form, 39-56; Chapter Three, Narrative
as a Formal System, 76-78; Chapter Eight, Continuity Editing,
McBride, Joseph and Michael Wilmington. John Ford. 1974. New York: Da
Capo, 1975. 53-62.
Cawelti, John G. Savagery, Civilization, and the Western Hero.
Focus on the Western. Ed. Jack Nachbar. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall,
Film, Form, and Culture (CD-ROM): Continuity Editing.
Kolker, 26-34; 38-42; 61-83; 153-60; 183-85.
(November 5-7) Classical Hollywood Cinema II
Gilda, dir. Charles Vidor, 1946. (110min)
exam: In regular lecture time and location, Wednesday November 7, 11am-12.15pm.
Genre (noir); cinematography; star discourses; feminist film theory,
gender, and sexuality (the gaze, femme fatale).
Bordwell and Thompson, Chapter Seven, Cinematography,193-248;
Chapter Four, Genre, 94-109.
Dyer, Richard. Resistance through Charisma: Rita Hayworth and
Gilda, Women in Film Noir, ed. E. Ann Kaplan, Rev. ed, London:
BFI, 1998: 115-22.
Film, Form, and Culture (CD-ROM): Camera; Lighting; Genre
Kolker, Chapter 4; 153-57; 185-195.
(November 12-14) French Cinema and the New Wave
A Bout de Souffle (Breathless), dir. Jean-Luc Godard, 1960. (100min)
French new wave; international responses to Hollywood cinema; narrative
alternatives to Hollywood; non-continuity within continuity; the avant-garde;
Bordwell and Thompson, Chapter Eleven, Narrative Alternatives
to Classical Filmmaking, 366-71; The French New Wave,
419-22; Chapter Five, Experimental Film,128-44.
Wollen, Peter. Godard and Counter Cinema: Vent dEst.
Readings and Writings: Semiotic Counter-Strategies. London: Verso, 1982:79-91.
(November 19-21) New Hollywood Cinema and Feminist Theory:
Strange Days, dir. Kathryn Bigelow, 1995. (122min)
Hollywood post-studio system; genre (sci-fi); feminist film theory,
auteur theory, postmodernism.
Bordwell and Thompson, Chapter One, Modes of Production,
29-34; Chapter Ten, The Concept of Style, 327-32; Chapter
Twelve, The New Hollywood and Independent Filmmaking, 422-25.
Corrigan, Timothy. Auteurs and the New Hollywood. The New
American Cinema. Ed. Jon Lewis. Durham: Duke UP, 1998. 38-63.
Film, Form, and Culture (CD-ROM): Point of View; The Long
BREAK, NOVEMBER 22-NOVEMBER 25.
(November 26-28) Non-fiction film and documentary
Times of Harvey Milk, dir. Robert Epstein, 1984. (87min)
2 due 7pm, November 27 (at screening).
The non-fiction film; documentary practices; the construction of history;
gay and lesbian film-making.
Bordwell and Thompson, Chapter Five, Documentary, 110-28.
Waugh, Thomas. Walking on Tippy Toes: Lesbian and Gay Liberation
Documentary of the Post-Stonewall Period, 1969-1984. The Fruit
Machine: Twenty Years of Writing on Queer Cinema. Durham: Duke UP, 246-71.
(December 3-5) International cinemas
Express [Chongqing Senlin], dir. Wong Kar-Wai, 1994. (
Hong Kong cinema; postcolonialism; transnationality and cultural identity;
the national cinema paradigm and its problems; postmodernism; film sound.
Bordwell and Thompson, Chapter Nine Sound in the Cinema,
Abbas, Ackbar. Hong Kong: Culture and the Politics of Disappearance.
Public Worlds 2. Minneapolis: U of Minnesota P, 1997. 11-29, 48-49,
Film, Form, and Culture (CD-ROM): Sound and Music.
exam: Wednesday December 12, 8.30am-11.30am, Annenberg.
NB: Please note that this
syllabus is subject to change during the semester. Any changes will
be announced in class and by electronic means.