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Film Studies

  • Builds Understanding of Cinematic Storytelling
  • Analyzes and Discusses Films
  • Develops Cultural Aptitude

Whether your goal is to write a screenplay, work in the film industry, or simply explore and enjoy cinematic stories, these courses develop skills essential for analyzing and discussing films. Be transported to diverse cultures and historic periods through films.

Cities on Film: NYC and Paris

Explore films that transport viewers to New York City and Paris, and explore each city’s physical, social, cultural, and political life.

2018 Spring
1 section

Elia Kazan: Neither Hero nor Villain

Examine Elia Kazan’s legendary career, as well as his complex and much-debated legacy, by viewing his films.

2018 Spring
1 section

War Films from the Other Side

View and discuss eight films that depict war from non-American perspectives.

2018 Spring
1 section

The Hollywood Blacklist: Onscreen

View and discuss six films by artists who were impacted by the House Un-American Activities Committee and the Hollywood Blacklist.

2018 Spring
1 section

Let's Go to the Movies

Examine a wide range of films and engage in lively discussions about what makes each a truly exceptional work of art.

2018 Spring
3 sections

The Best Films You Probably Haven't Seen

Screen and discuss a variety of terrific movies you may have missed but are definitely worth seeing.

2018 Spring
2 sections

Buon Appetito! Food and Italian Cinema

Explore how, in Italian cinema, food can be a window into culture, history, and communication.

2018 Spring
1 section

Celluloid Love: A Decade-by-Decade Look at Movie Love Stories

We will view one film from nearly every decade of the past 100 years to uncover how our ideas of love have developed, both on screen and off.

Dekalog: An In-Depth Study of a Modern Masterpiece

View and discuss Krzysztof Kieslowski’s Dekalog, considered one of the 20th century’s greatest achievements in visual storytelling.

From Night of the Living Dead to Get Out: George Romero and the Revolution of the Modern Horror Film

Watch landmark horror films in class and discuss them, with a special emphasis on interpreting them as expressions of sociopolitical anxieties.

From Script to Screen: Hollywood Classics

Read four screenplays of classic Hollywood movies and then watch the films, examining what worked, what didn’t, and why.

Italian Neorealism: From The Earth Trembles to Umberto D

Explore lesser-known films of Italian neorealism, a style that excelled at portraying the harsh realities of life in Italy during and after WWII.

Major English and European Directors: From Mike Leigh to Claire Denis

Watch and discuss films of major English, Italian, and French directors, including Leigh, Olmi, the Taviani brothers, Denis, and Tavernier.

Movies Made in New York

Explore 10 films that are set in New York and feature the City not just serving as a backdrop but playing a major role in the narrative.

Sidney Lumet: New York's Quintessential Director

View the films of Sidney Lumet and discuss the way in which he used locations—most often New York City—as characters in his films.

The American Movie Musical

Watch six movie musicals and discuss the genre’s evolution, common themes, and relevance today.

The Antihero in Television: From Tony Soprano to Claire Underwood

Explore why the antihero is so prevalent on television shows, including The Sopranos, The Wire, and Mad Men.

The Darker Side of Noir: From Touch of Evil to Sweet Smell of Success

Go beyond the private eye and femme fatale and discover six different types of noir films.

The Modern Biopic: From Coal Miner's Daughter to Lincoln

Explore how modern filmmakers have reinvented the biopic and now use the genre to explore how history still resonates today.

The War Film: From the Battlefield to the Home Front

View and discuss eight films that depict war, both on the battlefield and at home.