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Film Studies Courses

In film studies courses, a broad foundation in film theory, history and criticism is complemented by a more in depth examination of films from particular genres, themes, directors and nations. These courses feature weekly screenings of films, as well as engaging lectures and provocative discussion that relate these films to key ideas, theories and concepts addressed in assigned readings.

A grounding in the study of film is provided by these film courses: CIN 251W Film History, CMM 252W Film Analysis, and CIN 250 World Cinema.

Most of the advanced courses in film studies have a variable topic format which means that the specific topic for the class varies by semester. Because of this, a student can repeat these courses for credit. This approach to curriculum provides students with a greater variety of film studies courses and more flexibility to take classes that focus on topics that are of special interest to them. Here is just a sampling of some of the many topics offered in these film studies classes in recent years:

  • CMM 311 Film Directors: Extended close study of major directors in cinema. Alfred Hitchcock; Frank Capra and Gus Van Sant; Stanley Kubrick; Bernardo Bertolucci; the Coen Brothers; John Ford, Howard Hawks, and Josef von Sternberg; Otto Preminger; Douglas Sirk
  • CIN 312 National Cinemas: A thorough survey of a major national cinema. Arab; German; British; French; African; Indian; Israeli
  • CIN 313 Film Genres: A close study of historically important genres in cinema. Comedy; Western; Genre and Gender; Road Movies; Horror; Science Fiction; Crime Movies; Documentary
  • CIN 314 Studies in Film: An intensive study of a major motif, topic or limited period in film. Alternative Cinema; Film and Dream; Orientalism in Film; "Reel" Nature; City in Film; The Death Drive; The Comic Character; Masculinity in the Movies

New versions of these film studies courses are created regularly by Professors Michael Walsh and Robert Lang and visiting faculty so that the offerings are timely, innovative and diverse. For instance, Robert Lang's course in Arab Cinema coincided with the recent uprising in several Arab countries and addressed these current events.

These accomplished scholars incorporate their own work into their courses. Michael Walsh's National Cinema course on British Cinema includes his original scholarship on prominent English directors like Peter Greenaway, while Robert Lang gave students a preview of arguments from his upcoming book on Tunisian films in his Arab Cinema course.

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