Courses & Pedagogy

Education & Experience

Degrees, certification, teaching, collaboration, achievement, recognition, and assessment.


Courses & Pedagogy

Courses & Pedagogy

Applying theory, history, and criticism to practical instruction in studios, on location -- even in classrooms.


Films & Scholarship

Films & Scholarship

A portfolio of award-winning creative projects. A consideration of research interests.



Review: Hundraåringen som klev ut genom fönstret och försvann (2013)

Aimlessly wandering from a retirement home on the day of his first triple-digit birthday, Allan Karlsson unwittingly acquires a fortune in drug money. A caravan of unsavory biker thugs (apparently trained at the Home Alone school for comic criminals) gives chase. Oblivious to his pursuers (indeed, to his surroundings), Karlsson attracts a quirky retinue, people […]

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A quick guide to painless recommendation letters

Recommendation Letters (for first year students)

It’s long been my policy to post an ideal recommendation on my office door.  That way even freshmen can see the virtues I value:  conscientious attendance, winsome collaboration, imaginative work which marries theory and practice, and so on.  When seniors request a letter, I ask them to bring examples of work which merits it or […]

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Shenandoah (1965)

Review: Shenandoah (1965)

Despite its many genre tropes, I’m not sure Shenandoah counts as a Western. Yet it performs a function common to Westerns of the 1960s. It allows pointed criticism of current events (in this case, the Vietnam War) from a safe, thus palatable, distance. Many have tagged this an anti-war film, but I’m not sure it […]

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your answer must be in the form of a question

Podcast: Freedom from Facts?

Each communication revolution — written, printed, electrochemical, and digital — has promised to liberate us from rote-memorized facts.  Why would anyone with a calculator constantly in her pocket learn a multiplication table?  Perhaps a world of online tutorials signals an end to class time spent teaching how to white-balance cameras.  If so, how might course […]

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The color. The aroma. The mimeograph.

Podcast: Who Owns Your Online Syllabus?

Jurassic Park (the first one) owned the box office.  I was teaching at a poverty row college.  Our staff retreats too frequently concluded with faculty appeals to gods and donors for the wherewithal to make payroll.

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151004a drop

A Drop in the Bucket

Mary arrives for her October advising appointment.  Transcript and catalog hang limply at her side.  We look over a grid of offered courses.  She chooses a schedule for her final spring semester.  I skim my copy of her record and commend her for coming so close to graduating cum laude.  “Almost made it, didn’t you?” […]

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151004a oscar

AMPAS: An Irrelevant Legacy

I love the Oscars, America’s night of royal pageantry.  On that night, the Academy reminds us that film occupies a sweet spot at the crossroads of commerce and art.  That the moving image is society’s chief means of ideological exchange.  That the best movies are not merely good and important stories, they are the nexus […]

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151011a post grey

Shades of Je Suis Charlie

Our Dodge Polara – more tank than station wagon – slowed as it passed the Biltmore Twin Theatres. Maybe Mom was trying to read the picket signs. Marchers and their placards asserted hate for Hollywood, love for God and country. Oddly enough, I don’t remember which movie was on the marquee. Last Tango in Paris, […]

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151011a post eavesdrop

Screenwriting: Empathetic Listening

A new friend of mine complimented a favorite scriptwriter as “having an ear for natural dialogue.””How would you develop one of those?” I asked him, over hanger steak at the Brewing Company.”Eavesdrop,” he said. “Listen to people.”I remembered being in St. Louis a year ago. Taking a break from an academic conference, I sat alone […]

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