160309b header cinema

Topics & Texts

LUMIÈRE, MÉLIÈS & EDISON

Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography (AFI/NHK, 1992, 1:32)
Lumière Premiere Program (Lumière, 1895)
Le Voyage Dans La Lune (Méliès, 1902, :14)
The Great Train Robbery (Porter, 1903, :12)

D.W. GRIFFITH

Birth of a Nation (Griffith, 1915, 2:59)

THE SILENT COMICS

Rob Roy (Caton-Jones, 1995, 2:19)
Good Morning, Babylon (Taviani, 1987, 1:55)
Buster Keaton: A Hard Act to Follow (Brownlow & Gill, 1987, 2:40)
The Bangville Police (Lehrman, 1913)
The Rink (Chaplin, 1916, :25)
The Immigrant (Chaplin, 1917, :30)
Safety Last (Newmeyer & Taylor, 1923, 1:13)
The Gold Rush (Chaplin, 1925, 1:12)
City Lights (Chaplin, 1931, 1:27)
The General (Keaton, 1927, 1:14)

GERMAN EXPRESSIONISM

Das Kabinett des Doktor Caligari (Weine, 1919, 1:09)
Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens (Murnau, 1922, 1:36)
Der Golem, wie er in die Welt kam (Boese, 1920, 1:25)
Metropolis (Lang, 1926, 2:00)
Beetlejuice (Burton, 1988, 1:32)
Recommended Viewing: Shadow of the Vampire (Merhige, 2000, 1:32)

SOVIET MONTAGE

Bronenosets Potemkin (Eisenstein, 1925, 1:05)
The Music Man (DaCosta, 1962, 2:31)
Jaws (Spielberg, 1975, 2:04)
The Untouchables (DePalma, 1987, 1:59)

DOCUMENTARY

Nanook of the North (Flaherty, 1922, 1:05)
Berlin, Synfonie einer Großstadt (Ruttman, 1927, 1:19)
Chelovek s kinoapparatom (Vertov, 1929, 1:08)
Triumph des Willens (Riefenstahl, 1934, 1:19)
The Lion King (Allers & Minkoff, 1994, 1:29)
Gladiator (Scott, 2000, 2:35)
The March of Time (de Rochemont, various)
Olympia 2. Teil - Fest der Schönheit (Riefenstahl, 1938, 1:30)
Drifters (Grierson, 1929, :49)
The River (Lorentz, 1937, 30)
Nuit et brouillard (Resnais, 1955, :30)
Buena Vista Social Club (Wenders, 1998, 1:45)

SOUND & ANIMATION

Little Nemo (McCay, 1911)
Gertie the Dinosaur (McCay, 1914)
The Sinking of the Lusitania (McCay, 1918)
Koko's Earth Control (Fleischer, 1928)
Steamboat Willie (Disney, 1928, :07)
The Band Concert (Disney, 1935)
Popeye the Sailor Meets Sindbad the Sailor (Fleischer, 1936, :16)
The Rabbit of Seville (Warner Bros, 1950, :07).
Fiddle De Dee (McLaren, 1947, :03)
Gerald McBoing Boing (Cannon/Hubley, 1951, :08)
Moonbird (Hubley, 1959)
Munro (Deitch, 1960)
The Hole (Hubley, 1962)
Yellow Submarine (Dunning, 1968, :90)
Ersatz (Vukotic, 1961)
Ruka/The Hand (Trnka, 1965, :18)
The Nightmare Before Christmas (Selick, 1993, 1:16)
The Wrong Trousers (Park, 1993, :30)
Tin Toy (Lasseter, 1988, :05)
Toy Story (Lasseter, 1995, 1:21)

THE GOLDEN AGE & SCREWBALL COMEDY

Bringing Up Baby (Hawks, 1938, 1:42)
The Philadelphia Story (Cukor, 1940, 1:52)
Ball of Fire (Hawks, 1941, 1:51)

FORD & THE WESTERN

Stagecoach (Ford, 1939, 1:39)
The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (Ford, 1962, 1:59)
Il Buono, il brutto, il cattivo (Leone, 1967, 2:41)
The Wild Bunch (Peckinpah, 1969, 2:14)
The Cowboys (Rydell, 1972, 2:08)

ITALIAN NEO-REALISM

Ladri di biciclette (DeSica, 1948, 1:30)
Roma città aperta (Rossellini, 1945, 1:45)

ORSON WELLES

Citizen Kane (Welles, 41, 1:59)

FILM NOIR

The Maltese Falcon (Huston, 41, 1:40)
Double Indemnity (Wilder, 44, 1:46)

POST-WAR JAPAN

Rashomon (Kurosawa, 50, 1:28)

THE AMERICAN MUSICAL

Top Hat (Sandrich, 35, 1:39)
The Wizard of Oz (Fleming, 39, 1:41)
Singin' in the Rain (Kelly & Donen, 52, 1:42)
The Sound of Music (Wise, 65, 2:54)

FEAR & GIMMICKS OF THE 1950S

Invasion of the Body Snatchers (Siegel, 56, 1:20)

THE FRENCH NEW WAVE

À bout de souffle (Godard, 59, 1:29)
Les Quatre Cents Coups (Truffaut, 59, 1:39)

EUROPEAN ART-CINEMA

Det Sjunde inseglet (Bergman, 57, 1:36)

ALFRED HITCHCOCK

Rear Window (Hitchcock, 54, 1:52)
North by Northwest (Hitchcock, 59, 2:16)

THE BRITISH EMIGRÉS

Lawrence of Arabia (Lean, 62, 3:42)
Goldfinger (Hamilton, 64, 1:51)
Henry V (Branagh, 89, 2:17)

INDEPENDENT & NON-THEATRICAL CINEMA

Meshes of the Afternoon (Deren, 43, :18)
Easy Rider (Hopper, 69, 1:34)
Festival Shorts

CHOP SOCKY, BOLLYWOOD & BEYOND

Meng long guojiang (Lee, 1972, 1:31)
Ying xiong (Zhang, 2002, 1:39)
Kung Fu Hustle (Chow, 2004, 1:38)
Salaam Bombay! (Nair, 1988, 1:53)
Bend It Like Beckham (Chadha, 2002, 1:52)
Lagaan (Gowariker, 2001, 3:44)
Three Idiots (Hirani, 2009, 2:51)

BRATS & BLOCKBUSTERS

2001: A Space Odyssey (Kubrick, 69, 2:19)
The Godfather (Coppola, 72, 2:15)
Jaws (Spielberg, 75, 2:04)
Star Wars (Lucas, 77, 2:01)

CINEMA DIVERSITY

Working Girls (Borden, 86, 1:30)
Do The Right Thing (Lee, 89, 2:00)
Desperado (Rodruiguez, 95, 1:43)

 

CONTACT THE PROFESSOR

The classroom setting is such that not all needs can be met within it.  I encourage you, therefore, to visit my office often.  It is my pleasure to discuss grades, attendance, notes, lectures, or anything else which will make you a better student.   Your grades can only benefit from regular communication with your professors.  I will gladly work with you to arrange meeting times convenient to us both. Feel free to contact me:

  • by e-mail at bfuller@edinboro.edu.
  • by phone at 616.498.4336 (49.VIDEO).  Texting?  Remember to identify yourself by name and course.
  • in person.  My office hours are posted with video conferencing links.

I will respond to most messages within 12 business hours.

COURSE DESCRIPTION & OBJECTIVES

The emphasis of the course is on film and video as creative art media and the creative process as essential to analytical thinking and expression. The course examines historical and aesthetic approaches of the media based on twentieth century art. It offers individual experiences in film and video production. This course is approved for General Education designation of Computer Competency.

Through the project-based work of this course, the student will:

  • identify and employ the pre-production activities that govern digital filmmaking — including location scouting, scriptwriting, casting, storyboarding, and scheduling.
  • identify and employ rudimentary principles of lighting, camera operation, sound recording to capture video and audio.
  • identify and employ principles of cinema grammar to edit digital video footage and audio recordings.
  • store a finished digital video and prepare it for distribution.
  • support creative collaboration with safety, protocols, and etiquette, in the studio and on-location.
  • direct and respond to the direction of others.

Instruction will offer cultural and historical context for course assignments through lectures, presentations, and group discussions.

GRADES, PENALTIES, & APPEALS

Coursework will be weighted as indicated:

Projects 60%
Quizzes & Assignments20%
Participation20%

In life and in the classroom, I encourage you to work hardest on the things that count most.

Assignment grades will be based on the following scale:

93-100A73-76C
90-92A-70-72C-
87-89B+67-69D+
83-86B63-66D
80-82B-60-62D-
77-79C+< 60F

Coursework in Digital Filmmaking frequently takes the form of practical performance and projects.   If you are not present in class when your name is called to undertake a task, your work will be considered late.  If your work is submitted incomplete or otherwise outside the assignment’s specified format parameters, it may be returned to you for correction.  Upon resubmission, it will be considered late work.

Late work can earn no more than a maximum of 60 points.  Work is considered late if submitted or time-stamped after deadlines posted in the syllabus (usually specified by date and time).  If, because of extreme and prolonged sickness, you miss a deadline and are able to substantiate a claim of incapacitation with a note from a reputable doctor or Student Health Services, the grades of your remaining assignments will be given greater weight to compensate. Otherwise, you will receive a zero for the assignment. Examinations must be taken when scheduled.

Because there are sometimes no “right” and “wrong” answers in this field of study, I am open to a certain amount of discussion with regard to the grade awarded any given assignment. Appeals should be made in a timely fashion, within two class periods of grade notification/posting.  Appeals should be offered with rhetorical and presentational clarity, preferably face-to-face or via video conference.

Appeals are more likely to be successful if students have solicited the professor's input on at least two intermediate versions of the project (see "Feedback & Revision").

FEEDBACK & REVISION

Syllabus deadlines are the date and time an assignment is due in its final version. The nature of filmmaking is such, however, that the most successful students typically solicit professor feedback on intermediate versions of major projects. While this is not a requirement, you ignore the Academy’s proven “draft-and-revise” rhythm at significant peril to your grade.

Responding to students’ desire for the most immediate feedback on their project work, grades and comments are typically reported online, usually within seven days of submission. It is therefore the responsibility of students to regularly consult D2L, Edinboro’s classroom management software, for the most current report of their grades.

QUIZZES & PARTICIPATION

Quizzes may be given without warning to encourage attendance and competency throughout the term.

Participation will be evaluated throughout the semester by professor and peers based on student contribution to class community. Assigning the grade, I am chiefly concerned with the following questions:

  1. To what degree and in what ways does the student demonstrate respect for his/her audience and co-laborers?
  2. To what degree and in what ways does the student model dependability and responsibility?
  3. In what ways has the student participated in work load, idea generation, and leadership — apart from the work necessary to complete his/her individual assignments?
  4. Of what value are the student’s criticism and suggestions for improvement valued by his/her peers?
SUBMISSION FORMAT

Substantiating paperwork (storyboards, lighting plots, scripts, talent releases) tends to be rewarded with higher grades if presented professionally. Written work submitted electronically should be formatted as .pdf files, with multiple pages combined in a .pdf binder. Completed student films should be submitted as specified in each assignment, usually as links to your Vimeo account or files via OneDrive.

Please be advised that uploading large video files is time consuming.  Internet service providers typically offer file uploads at 1/10 the speed of downloads (check your own ISP speeds here).  Make allowances to submit your work before posted deadlines.

ATTENDANCE & ETIQUETTE

Students are expected to attend each class meeting in its entirety, and will be penalized for late arrivals and early departures.  Class absences are excused for medical reasons, university activities approved by the appropriate vice president or designee, and/or for personal exigencies. University activities appropriate to be considered as an excused absence include but are not limited to: scheduled athletic events, cultural events, academic competitions, etc., in which the student is a participant. Other appropriate situations include: military duties, auto accidents, death in immediate family, medical emergencies. Verification of such absences may be required by the instructor, and the student is responsible for make-up work as required by the instructor.

Classes will not be held on holidays officially recognized by the university. All other days of the term are fair game for lectures, quizzes and assignments. Those students who plan to leave early for or return late from holiday breaks may not reschedule exams or other work.

You’re encouraged to use smart phones, tablets, and laptops in disciplined ways which accomplish the work of the course.  It’s considered rude, however, to engage in private communiqués (facebook, twitter, IMs, texts) during class.

The classroom is a protected space where together students and faculty rehearse ideas that are often not yet ready to be shared with the wider world.  Effective teachers adapt course content for a narrow audience of students, tailoring discussions on the fly to circumstances of the moment.  Exchanges are necessarily fraught with controversy, challenge, and misunderstanding.  Please safeguard the learning enterprise from surreptitious audio and video surveillance.  Do not film, record, or share, audio or video images of anyone without a signed personal release.  This legal warning applies explicitly to video conferences, class lectures, and studio activities.  To honor the ownership of intellectual property, lectures are not recorded; Keynote and PowerPoint presentations are not stored or distributed.  Major concepts will be repeated frequently, both verbally and visually, using the Harvard Outline Format for easy note-taking.

Silence your phones during class meetings and project work.  You’d hate to ruin an otherwise fabulous take on location with a Kanye West ringtone.

HONESTY & OWNERSHIP

It is expected that all work submitted through this course is the student’s original work, generated for the express purpose of completing the requirements of this course. Students are to be aware that academic dishonesty is not tolerated in this course and should be familiar with the following definitions:

  • Cheating. Behaviors including, but not limited to, use of unauthorized notes or reference materials during examinations; copying answers from another student’s paper during an examination; the unauthorized possession of academic materials, including exams; the unauthorized exchange of course assessment materials, including exams; the unauthorized exchange of information or collaboration regarding tests, or other course assignments; aiding another to engage in cheating; and/or all other acts of academic dishonesty that any member of this academic community would reasonably understand to be a breach of this academic integrity statement will be considered cheating and an act of academic dishonesty.
  • Plagiarism. Plagiarism may be defined as the act of taking the ideas and/or expression of ideas of another person and representing them as one’s own. This includes, but is not limited to, using ideas or passages from a work without properly attributing the source, paraphrasing the work of another without giving proper credit, and/or the sale, purchase, or exchange of papers or research. It is the student’s responsibility to know what plagiarism is and to properly cite the work of others. If a student is in doubt, it is their responsibility to resolve any ambiguity prior to submitting the work. Plagiarism is nothing less than an act of theft, and, as such, is subject to University disciplinary action.
  • Copyright.  While plagiarism involves appropriating someone’s ideas without credit, copyright infringement is taking or altering someone’s original created work without paying.  Copyright enforcement is subject to a number of variables including the lifespan of the creator and his/her heirs as well as corporate ownership of works made for hire.  Fair warning:  burgeoning filmmakers often wrongly believe they must pay other creators for work used only if their film turns a profit.  Not true.

The standards of integrity and the penalties of dishonesty apply equally to

  • ideas, words, and speech
  • visual images, recordings, performances, and files
  • audio recordings, performances, and files
  • all electrochemical means of storage and communication
  • use of computing facilities and resources in violation of copyright laws

I will vigorously pursue prosecution of academic dishonesty to the very limit of sanctions allowed by the university, up to and including failure of the course and expulsion from the university.  I will work just as vigorously with students to prevent even unintended lapses of integrity.

While student media producers retain copyright ownership of their respective work, enrollment in this course constitutes your permission to let the university, the department, the professor, their representatives, and successors, exhibit and distribute for promotional purposes those media projects submitted in fulfillment of course assignments.  Your enrollment further implies consent to be photographed in class or while working on class projects.  Without any effect on your grade, you may withhold or limit such permission by indicating your wish to do so in a note to your professor signed, witnessed, and dated, before the university’s last day to drop-add.

EQUIPMENT & EXPENSES

Online offerings of this course do not include access to campus facilities.

Equipment loan is not available to students enrolled in online offerings of this course.  Students are responsible for access to specified equipment.

In lieu of a required textbook, students should set aside $75 for production expenses and festival entry fees.

ACCESS & TITLE IX

The college offers services to meet the accommodation needs of students with many types of disabilities. The Office for Students with Disabilities (OSD) provides services to students based upon documentation of a disability and a request for accommodations based on this disability. Please refer to Policy A008 (Reasonable Accommodations for Students with Disabilities).

Edinboro University and its faculty are committed to assuring a safe and productive educational environment for all students. In order to comply with the requirements of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and the University’s commitment to offering supportive measures in accordance with the new regulations issued under Title IX, the University requires faculty members to report incidents of sexual violence shared by students to the University’s Title IX Coordinator. The only exceptions to the faculty member’s reporting obligation are when incidents of sexual violence are communicated by a student during a classroom discussion, in a writing assignment for a class, or as part of a University-approved research project. Faculty members are obligated to report sexual violence or any other abuse of a student who was, or is, a child (a person under 18 years of age) when the abuse allegedly occurred to the person designated in the University protection of minors policy.

Information regarding the reporting of sexual violence and the resources that are available to victims of sexual violence is set forth online here or in-person at

Office of Social Equity
Reeder Hall, Third Floor, 219 Meadville Street
Edinboro, PA 16444 • 814-732-2167

 

 

COURSE DESCRIPTION

A survey of American film history with an emphasis on principles of critical viewing. Includes study of important thematic genres, stylistic movements, and technological developments. Two hours of lecture and four hours of lab per week.

COURSE OBJECTIVES

Through the work of this course, the student will:

  • become familiar with the major historical, ideological, technological, and aesthetic developments of American and related foreign cinemas.
  • decipher communicative techniques of the moving image.

GRADING

FORMAT OF WRITTEN WORK
Unless otherwise indicated, written assignments should be typed in MLA format, then submitted as hard copies. Substantiating paperwork (storyboards, lighting plots, scripts, talent releases) tends to be rewarded with higher grades if presented professionally (i.e., typed in easily-navigable folders or binders). Written work submitted by e-mail should be formatted as .pdf (not MS-Word) files.

LATE SUBMISSION AND PENALTIES
Late work can earn no more than a maximum of 64 points. Work is considered late if it is submitted (or, in the case of e-mail, time-stamped) after lecture begins on the due date. If, because of extreme and prolonged sickness, you miss a deadline and are able to substantiate a claim of incapacitation with a note from a reputable doctor or the College Health Center, the grades of your remaining assignments will be given greater weight to compensate. Otherwise, you will receive a zero for the assignment. Examinations must be taken when scheduled.

FEEDBACK AND REVISION
Syllabus deadlines are the date and time an assignment is due in its final version. The Academy’s time-tested draft-and-revision model suggests that you should plan on soliciting your professor’s feedback on at least two intermediate versions of each project. While this is not a requirement, you ignore this recommendation at significant peril to your grade.

QUIZZES
Quizzes may be given without warning to encourage attendance and reading throughout the semester.

GRADE SCALE
Coursework will be weighted as indicated:

Midterm Exam 16.666%
Final Exam16.666%
Take Home Exam16.666%
Research Paper16.666%
Quizzes & Assignments16.666%
Class Participation16.666%

Assignment grades will be based on the following scale:

93-100A73-76C
90-92A-70-72C-
87-89B+67-69D+
83-86B63-66D
80-82B-60-62D-
77-79C+< 60F

Responding to students’ desire for the most immediate feedback on their project work, grades and comments are reported via Moodle. It is therefore the responsibility of students to regularly consult Moodle for the most current report of their grades.

SCHEDULE

The following class schedule should be interpreted as a general timetable governing the subjects to be covered in this course. Class discussion and pace often dictate additions, deviations, and omissions.

SCREENINGS

The basic premise of this class is that one best learns film history, technique, and influence through the analytical viewing of films. These facets of film communication can be documented by the viewing of the films that mark milestones in cinematic development. One or more films are scheduled for each class meeting, and students in the class are strongly encouraged to view as many films outside of class as possible.

R Aug 29Beginnings of Film Communication
T Sep 30Lumière, Méliès, and Edison
Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography (AFI/NHK, 92, 1:32).
Lumière Premiere Program (Lumière, 1895)
Le Voyage Dans La Lune (Méliès, 02,:14)
The Great Train Robbery (Porter, 03, :12).
R Sep 05D.W. Griffith
Birth of a Nation (Griffith, 15, 2:59).
T Sep 10The Silent Comics
Rob Roy (Caton-Jones, 95, 2:19)
Good Morning, Babylon (Taviani, 87, 1:55)
Buster Keaton: A Hard Act to Follow (Brownlow & Gill, 87, 2:40)
R Sep 12The Silent Comics II
The Bangville Police (Lehrman, 13)
The Rink (Chaplin, 16, :25)
The Immigrant (Chaplin, 17, :30)
The Gold Rush (Chaplin, 25, 1:12)
City Lights (Chaplin, 31, 1:27)
The General (Keaton, 27, 1:14)
T Sep 17German Expressionism
Das Kabinett des Doktor Caligari (Weine, 19, 1:09)
Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens (Murnau, 22, 1:36)
Der Golem, wie er in die Welt kam (Boese, 20, 1:25)
Metropolis (Lang, 26, 2:00)
Beetlejuice (Burton, 88, 1:32)
Recommended Viewing: Shadow of the Vampire (Merhige, 00, 1:32)
R Sep 19Soviet Montage
Bronenosets Potemkin (Eisenstein, 25, 1:05)
The Music Man (DaCosta, 62, 2:31)
Jaws (Spielberg, 75, 2:04)
The Untouchables (DePalma, 87, 1:59)
T Sep 24Documentary
Nanook of the North (Flaherty, 22, 1:05)
Berlin, Synfonie einer Großstadt (Ruttman, 27, 1:19).
Chelovek s kinoapparatom (Vertov, 29, 1:08)
R Sep 26Documentary II
Triumph des Willens (Riefenstahl, 34, 1:19)
The Lion King (Allers & Minkoff, 94, 1:29)
Gladiator (Scott, 00, 2:35)
The March of Time (de Rochemont, various)
Olympia 2. Teil - Fest der Schönheit (Riefenstahl, 38, 1:30)
Drifters (Grierson, 29, :49)
The River (Lorentz, 37, 30)
Nuit et brouillard (Resnais, 55, :30)
Buena Vista Social Club (Wenders, 98, 1:45)
T Oct 01Sound and Animation
Little Nemo (McCay, 11)
Gertie the Dinosaur (McCay, 14)
The Sinking of the Lusitania (McCay, 18)
Koko's Earth Control (Fleischer, 28)
Steamboat Willie (Disney, 28, :07)
The Band Concert (Disney, 35)
Popeye the Sailor Meets Sindbad the Sailor (Fleischer, 36, :16)
The Rabbit of Seville (Warner Bros, 50, :07).
R Oct 03Sound and Animation II
Fiddle De Dee (McLaren, 47, :03)
Gerald McBoing Boing (Cannon/Hubley, 51, :08)
Munro (Deitch, 60)
Moonbird (Hubley, 59)
The Hole (Hubley, 62)
Yellow Submarine (Dunning, 68, :90)
Ersatz (Vukotic, 61)
Ruka/The Hand (Trnka, 65, :18)
The Nightmare Before Christmas (Selick, 93, 1:16)
The Wrong Trousers (Park, 93, :30)
Toy Story (Lasseter, 95, 1:21)
T Oct 08The Golden Age & Screwball Comedy
Bringing Up Baby (Hawks, 38, 1:42)
The Philadelphia Story (Cukor, 40, 1:52)
R Oct 10John Ford & The Western
Stagecoach (Ford, 39, 1:39)
The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (Ford, 62, 1:59)
Il Buono, il brutto, il cattivo (Leone, 67, 2:41)
The Wild Bunch (Peckinpah, 69, 2:14)
The Cowboys (Rydell, 72, 2:08)
T Oct 22Italian Neo-Realism
Ladri di biciclette (DeSica, 48, 1:30)
R Oct 24Orson Welles
Citizen Kane (Welles, 41, 1:59)
T Oct 29Film Noir
The Maltese Falcon (Huston, 41, 1:40)
Double Indemnity (Wilder, 44, 1:46)
R Oct 31Post War Japan
Rashomon (Kurosawa, 50, 1:28)
T Nov 05The American Musical
Top Hat (Sandrich, 35, 1:39)
The Wizard of Oz (Fleming, 39, 1:41)
Singin' in the Rain (Kelly & Donen, 52, 1:42)
The Sound of Music (Wise, 65, 2:54)
R Nov 07Fear & Gimmicks of the 1950s
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (Siegel, 56, 1:20)
T Nov 12The French New Wave
À bout de souffle (Godard, 59, 1:29)
Les Quatre Cents Coups (Truffaut, 59, 1:39)
R Nov 14European Art-Cinema
Det Sjunde inseglet (Bergman, 57, 1:36)
T Nov 19Alfred Hitchcock
Rear Window (Hitchcock, 54, 1:52)
North by Northwest (Hitchcock, 59, 2:16)
R Nov 21The British Emigrés
Lawrence of Arabia (Lean, 62, 3:42)
Goldfinger (Hamilton, 64, 1:51)
Henry V (Branagh, 89, 2:17)
T Nov 26Independent & Non-Theatrical Cinema
Meshes of the Afternoon (Deren, 43, :18)
Easy Rider (Hopper, 69, 1:34)
Festival Shorts
R Dec 05"Chop Socky" and Beyond
Meng long guojiang (Lee, 72, 1:31)
Salaam Bombay! (Nair, 88, 1:53)
T Dec 10Film School Brats & Blockbusters
2001: A Space Odyssey (Kubrick, 69, 2:19)
The Godfather (Coppola, 72, 2:15)
Jaws (Spielberg, 75, 2:04)
Star Wars (Lucas, 77, 2:01)
R Dec 12Cinema Diversity
Working Girls (Borden, 86, 1:30)
Do The Right Thing (Lee, 89, 2:00)
Desperado (Rodruiguez, 95, 1:43)

READINGS

In addition to lectures, screenings and discussions during class, assigned readings will aid you in learning the material covered in this course. Assignments will be made from the following required texts:

Corrigan, Timothy. A Short Guide to Writing About Film. 3rd ed.
Ebert, Roger, ed. Roger Ebert’s Book of Film. New York: Norton, 1997.
Gianetti, Louis. Understanding Movies. 7th ed. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 1995.
Kolker, Rober.  Film, Form, and Culture: The Cinema Studies CD-ROM. Version 1.0.2  CD-ROM.  McGraw Hill, 2001.

Readings should be completed prior to the class date for which they are assigned.

R Aug 29Beginnings of Film Communication
T Sep 30Lumière, Méliès, and Edison
PhotographyGianetti, 1-40
Edison's Vitascope CheeredThe New York Times in Ebert, 339-340
The Great Train RobberyThe Philadelphia Inquirer in Ebert, 340-341
LumièreMaxim Gorky in Ebert, 342-344
The NickelodeonsJoseph Medill Patterson in Ebert, 347-355
Writing About the MoviesCorrigan, 1-15
Preparing to Watch & Preparing to WriteCorrigan, 16-33
R Sep 05D.W. Griffith
I'm Sorry I Made Me CryS.J. Perelman in Ebert, 388-393
The Edited ImageCorrigan, 62-69
Six Approaches: Film HistoryCorrigan, 78-81
Six Approaches: Kinds of FormalismCorrigan, 86-87
Point of View: Play of Glances in Broken BlossomsKolker, Ch. 4
CameraKolker, Ch. 7
T Sep 10The Silent Comics
ActingGianetti, 237-284
From My AutobiographyCharlie Chaplin in Ebert, 359-362
Keaton at VeniceJohn Gillett & James Blue in Ebert, 379-388
Elements of Mise-en-Scène: Acting StyleCorrigan, 49-51
Cinematic Representation in Steamboat BillKolker, Ch. 1
R Sep 12The Silent Comics II
Story: The Classical ParadigmGianetti, 332-337
Film Terms and TopicsCorrigan, 34-45
T Sep 17German Expressionism
DramaGianetti, 323-360
Six Approaches: National CinemasCorrigan, 81-82
R Sep 19Soviet Montage
Editing: Soviet Montage...Gianetti, 150-162
Continuity EditingKolker, Ch. 2
MontageKolker, Ch. 4
Documentary
T Sep 24Story: Nonfictional NarrativesGianetti, 344-350
R Sep 26Montage in The Plow That Broke the PlainsKolker, Ch. 4
T Oct 01Sound and Animation
SoundGianetti, 199-236
Movement: Mechanical DistortionsGianetti, 120-129
Minnie and MickeyE.M. Forster in Ebert, 397-399
The Laws of Cartoon MotionMark O'Donnel in Ebert, 660-661
SoundCorrigan, 69-73
R Oct 10John Ford & The Western
StoryGianetti, 323-360
The Western: or the American Film...André Bazin in Ebert, 400-407
John Wayne: A Love SongJoan Didion in Ebert, 137-143
Six Approaches: GenresCorrigan, 82-84
T Oct 22Italian Neo-Realism
Theory: Theories of RealismGianetti, 439-449
R Oct 24Orson Welles
Mise en ScèneGianetti, 41-90
Synthesis: Citizen KaneGianetti, 471-507
From The Films of My LifeFrançois Truffaut in Ebert, 116-122
Film Terms and TopicsCorrigan, 45-61
Mise en ScèneKolker, Ch. 6
The Long TakeKolker, Ch. 3
T Oct 29Film Noir
Libby NoirLibby Gelman-Waxner in Ebert, 435-438
R Oct 31Post War Japan
From Something Like an AutobiographyAkira Kurosawa in Ebert, 481-488
From Something Like an AutobiographyAkira Kurosawa in Ebert, 661-668
T Nov 05The American Musical
Sound: Musicals and OperaGianetti, 218-222
Photography: ColorGianetti, 21-27
MusicKolker, Ch. 8
R Nov 07Fear & Gimmicks of the 1950s
The Imagination of DisasterSusan Sontag in Ebert, 422-435
T Nov 12The French New Wave
Editing: André Bazin and... RealismGianetti, 162-172
Six Approaches: AuteursCorrigan, 84-86
R Nov 14European Art-Cinema
From The Magic LanternIngmar Bergman in Ebert, 444-446
T Nov 19Alfred Hitchcock
Editing: Hitchcock's North by NorthwestGianetti, 172-198
My Own MethodsAlfred Hitchcock in Ebert, 446-452
From Behind the Scenes of 'Psycho'Janet Leigh in Ebert, 654-659
Point of ViewKolker, Ch. 5
R Nov 21The British Emigrés
WritingGianetti, 361-394
T Dec 10Film School Brats & Blockbusters
From The GodfatherMario Puzo in Ebert, 323-336
R Dec 12Cinema Diversity
From Do The Right ThingSpike Lee in Ebert, 536-547
IdeologyGianetti, 395-436
Six Approaches: IdeologyCorrigan, 87-90

ASSIGNMENTS

T Sep 03American Cinematographer Abstract
Find an American Cinematographer article that discusses a recent film you've watched and enjoyed. Summarize the article in a paragraph or two, paying particular attention to film stock, lighting, and camera choices of the cinematographer.
T Sep 05Choosing Film Stock
Use Kodak's Professional Motion Imaging site to research and account for the film stock choice(s) in your American Cinematographer abstract (above). Browse the film catalog and the site's "Chronology of Motion Picture Films" page. Be ready to discuss your findings during class.
R Oct 10Research Paper
Author a researched essay which responds to a topic assigned by your professor. Submit the final draft as a .pdf via e-mail to your professor. Be certain the words "research essay" appear in the subject field of your message. In all respects of format, your work should be presented in the MLA style. If you are uncertain about the particulars of the MLA format, I suggest you consult the most recent edition of The Little, Brown Handbook or the staff of the Writing Center.

Frequent and authoritative citation of primary sources represents the most reliable brand of scholarship. Therefore, in a paper about movies, I will expect bibliographic mention of actual films to far outnumber other sorts of references. By extension, this paper requires that you spend more time watching videos than prowling libraries.

Any more than a combined total of seven format, typographical or spelling errors will result in an automatic "F" for the assignment.
R Nov 14Group Project
As a team, create a five-minute film sequence out of the following basic situation: An older man and a younger woman are having a conversation in which the woman become increasingly angry; at the end of the sequence, her anger become explosive. In matters of content and form, the sequence should demonstrate the conventions of genre and style assigned you by the professor.
Screenwriter
1. Decide who these characters are. What is their relationship to each other? Father and daughter? Uncle and niece? Businessman and prostitute? Teacher and student? Give them any identities you wish.
2. What are they arguing about? first decide on a general subject -- money, love, sex, crime, a child, a grade -- and then, once you have narrowed it down, begin to write some lines of dialogue about this topic.
3. How does the scene end? What does the woman finally do to express her anger?
Production Designer
1. Create a setting for these characters. Where are they? What is the mis-en-scene? Does the scene occur inside or outside? Is it a public place, like a restaurant or bar? If so, is it crowded or empty? Clean or dirty? Attractive or ugly? Or is it a living room or bedroom? If so, whose living room or bedroom? How is it decorated? (Since you do not have to worry about the budget of this film, be as creative a set decorator as you wish.)
2. What are they wearing? Include make-up and hairstyles.
Director/Cinematographer/Editor
1. How is the room lit?
2. Storyboard a simple sequence of shots for this bit of narrative. Place the camera anywhere you'd like, move it whenever you want, and cut to another shot whenever you think it's appropriate. Or, if you decide to film the whole bit in a single take, note where the camera is placed at all times.
In a presentation not to exceed 10 minutes, your group will "pitch" the sequence to the class. At that time, you will submit to the instructor a script (with dialogue, detailed descriptions of set and characters, and thorough camera placement notes), a storyboard, and any other relevant materials. The script will conform to the Screenplay Format of the Writers Guild of America.
R Dec 12Film Review
Using chapter 12 of your text as a guide, review a film assigned by your professor. Please write as if you are reviewing the film for a magazine with national circulation. As a member of the press, you have attended an advance screening of the film. Few people who read your review have yet seen the film. They will likely decide to attend or avoid the movie on your recommendation.
Be sure to deal with the following elements...

Photography
Mise en scène
Movement: primary and secondary
Editing
Sound: music, dialogue, and effects
Drama: production design
Literature: themes, characters, narratology
Ideology
Theory: place on the formalist/realist spectrum and defend
...and, to a lesser degree, acting, story, and plot

As a .pdf attachment to an e-mail message, submit your work to your professor by 12:00 noon. Be certain the word "review" appears in the subject field of your message.

CONTACT

Where’s Brian when we need him? Is it really okay to call him at home in the middle of the night?

The classroom setting is such that not all needs can be met within it. I encourage you, therefore, to visit my office often. It is my pleasure to discuss grades, attendance, notes, lectures, or anything else which will make you a better student. Your grades can only benefit from regular communication with your professors. I will gladly work with you to arrange meeting times convenient to us both. Feel free to contact me:

  • by e-mail at mail@brianfuller.org [good].
  • by phone or voicemail at 616.498.4336 (49.VIDEO) [better].
  • in person [best].

ATTENDANCE & ETIQUETTE

Can I leave early to get to my next class across campus? What happens when I miss a class?

If you write a good essay or fail a math exam, you do so as an individual. But the success of a video production is often a collaborative endeavor that begins with attendance. You jeopardize any group project for which you show up late (or not at all). Reflecting the emphasis Media Production professors place on collaboration, strict attendance is required. Students will be penalized for late arrivals and early departures.

I’ve got tickets to leave early for spring break. Can I reschedule work to accommodate my travel plans?

Classes will not be held on holidays officially recognized by the college. All other days of the term are fair game for lectures, quizzes and assignments. Those students who plan to leave early for or return late from holiday breaks may not reschedule exams or other work.

Can I take class notes on my iPad? What are the professor’s expectations for electronic etiquette?

You’re encouraged to use smart phones, tablets, and laptops in disciplined ways which accomplish the work of the course. It’s considered rude, however, to engage in private communiqués (facebook, twitter, IMs, texts) during class.

Oops. My phone started ringing in class. Probably Mom calling…

The professor reserves the right to answer any cell phone call received by a student during class time. From a practical standpoint, you’d hate to ruin an otherwise fabulous take on location with a Justin Bieber ringtone.

I’ve seen this movie so many times, I can recite this scene by heart…

Common courtesy is expected of class members during class meetings. Specifically, students should not carry on conversations or make disturbing noises during lectures or screenings.

Since films are the primary texts of this course, the viewing experience should be respected by all. If you must get up during a film, please do so quietly and unobtrusively. Never walk in front of a television or in the throw of a movie projector during a screening.

APPEALS

I’m dissatisfied with an assignment grade. Any chance I can have it changed?

Because there are no “right” and “wrong” answers in this field of study, I am open to a certain amount of discussion with regard to the grade awarded any given assignment. Appeals should be made in a timely fashion, within two class periods of grade notification/posting. You may be notified of a grade by the return of paperwork or, more usually, in the posting of grades and comments to Moodle. Appeals should be made face to face (not by phone, in writing or by e-mail) and offered with rhetorical and presentational clarity (After all, this is a communication class).

HONESTY & OWNERSHIP

I downloaded a great new song on iTunes. Can I use it in the soundtrack of my class film project?

The current edition of our college Code of Student Conduct notes that “the student-faculty relationship is based on trust and mutual respect which can be seriously undermined by the suspicion or reality of academic dishonesty.” It elsewhere defines plagiarism as “the use, by paraphrase or direct quotation, of the published or unpublished work of another person without full and clear acknowledgment.”

Though expected to abide by the document as a whole, Media Production students may benefit from specific awareness of conduct proscribed by Article IV of the Code:

  • Cheating, plagiarism, or other forms of academic dishonesty.
  • Unauthorized possession, duplication or use of keys or other access devices to any College premises or unauthorized entry to or use of College premises.
  • Use of computing facilities and resources in violation of copyright laws.

The standards of honesty and the penalties of dishonesty apply equally to words, ideas, visual images, auditory images, and all electrochemical means of storage and communication.

I will vigorously pursue prosecution of academic dishonesty to the very limit of sanctions allowed by the college (Article V, Sections D and E), up to and including failure of the course and expulsion from the college. I will just as vigorously work with student to prevent even unintended lapses of integrity. If you are uncertain about how to avoid plagiarism or other forms of academic dishonesty, please consult a member of the English faculty, the most recent edition of The Little, Brown Handbook,or (preferably) ask me.

While student media producers retain copyright ownership of their respective work, enrollment in this course constitutes your permission to let the college, the department, the professor, their representatives, and successors, exhibit and distribute for promotional purposes those media projects submitted in fulfillment of course assignments. Without any effect on your grade you may withhold or limit such permission by indicating your wish to do so in a note to your professor signed, witnessed, and dated, before the course’s drop date.