Martha Nochimson, Film Critic and Writer / Covering David Lynch, Soap Opera, The Sopranos, David Chase, and Film Writing

World On Film

Syllabus B

Sample Syllabi For Use With World On Film: An Introduction

SYLLABUS B: Compass Points Of International Film: France, Italy, Japan, And India

Surveying the main currents in European and Asian film through four key national film cultures, giving slightly more time for in-depth coverage than SYLLABUS A.

For a 15-week semester:

WEEK I
INTRODUCTION TO THE STUDY OF INTERNATIONAL FILM
READING:
Introduction to Part I, pp. 2-22.
SCREENING:
Cleo From 5 to 7 (Dir. Agnes Varda, 1962)

FRANCE AND THE BEGINNINGS OF FILM

WEEK II
 
READING:
Chapter 1, "France: French Revolutions at the Movies," pp. 23-31; Chapter 2, "Russia: Utopia and Dystopia," pp. 70-92. Show selected clips from Battleship Potemkin(Dir. Sergei Eisenstein, 1925)
SCREENING:
Rules of the Game aka La Règle du Jeu (Jean Renoir, 1939)
NOTE:
This first assignment is designed to inaugurate the study of French national film culture in a way that includes some comparative film study. Contrasting Renoir and Eisenstein will alert your students to the spectrum of ideas circulating in early cinema and also to the spectrum of cinematic experiences. In the discussions of films during the semester, it would be interesting to ask students to trace the influences of both the politics of Eistensteinian montage and Renoir's experiments with poetic realism and creating effects with the camera and depth-of-field photography.
WEEK III
 
READING:
Chapter 1, "France: French Revolutions at the Movies," pp. 31-7.
SCREENINGS:
Boudu Saved From Drowning aka Boudu sauvé des eaux (Dir. Jean Renoir, 1932); The Grand Illusion aka La Grande Illusion (Dir. Jean Renoir, 1937)
WEEK IV
 
READING:
Chapter 1, "France: French Revolutions at the Movies," pp. 38-69.
Show clips from L'Atalante (Dir. Jean Vigo, 1934); Children of Paradise aka Les enfants du paradis (Dir. Marcel Carne, 1945); Orpheus (Dir. Jean Cocteau, 1950)
SCREENING:
Breathless aka A bout de soufflé (Dir. Jean-Luc Godard, 1960)

ITALY AND NEOREALISM

WEEK V
 
READING:
"Chapter 4, Italy: The Myth of History, Neorealism, and Beyond," pp. 150-57.
Show clips from Cabiria (Dir. Giovanni Pastrone, 1914) and Assunta Spina (Dirs. Francesca Bertini and Gustavo Serena, 1915)
SCREENING:
La Strada (Dir. Federico Fellini, 1954)
WEEK VI
 
READING:
Chapter 4, "Italy: The Myth of History, Neorealism, and Beyond," pp. 158-74.
Show clips from Ossessione aka Obsession (Dir. Luchino Visconti, 1943), Roma, città aperta aka Open City (Dir. Roberto Rossellini, 1945), and Umberto D. (Dir. Vittorio De Sica, 1952)
SCREENING:
The Bicycle Thief aka Ladri di biciclette (Dir. Vittorio De Sica, 1948)
WEEK VII
 
READING:
Chapter 4, "Italy: The Myth of History, Neorealism, and Beyond," pp. 174-82.
Show clips of I vitelloni aka The Young and the Passionate (Dir. Federico Fellini, 1953) and La Dolce Vita aka The Sweet Life (Dir. Federico Fellini, 1960)
SCREENING:
8 1/2 (Dir. Federico Fellini, 1963)
WEEK VIII
 
READING:
Chapter 4, "Italy: The Myth of History, Neorealism, and Beyond," pp. 182-94.
Show clips of Divorzio all'Italiana aka Divorce Italian Style (Dir. Pietro Germi, 1962), We All Loved Each Other So Much aka Ceravamo tanto amati (Dir. Ettore Scola, 1974), and The Icicle Thief aka Ladri de saponette (Dir. Maurizio Nichetti, 1989)
SCREENING:
L'avventura (Dir. Michelangelo Antonioni, 1960)

JAPAN AND ASIAN ENTRY INTO CINEMA

WEEK IX
 
READING:
Chapter 5, "Japan: Screening Feudalism and Modernism," pp. 195-211.
Show clips from Stray Dog (Dir. Akira Kurosawa, 1949), and The Story of Floating Weeds (Dir. Yasujiro Ozu, 1934)
SCREENING:
The Tokyo Story (Dir. Yasujiro Ozu, 1953)
WEEK X
 
READING:
Chapter 5, "Japan: Screening Feudalism and Modernism," pp. 218-36.
Show clips from The Seven Samurai (Dir. Akira Kurosawa, 1954); Double Suicide (Dir. Shinoda Masahiro, 1969); In the Realm of the Senses aka Ai no corrida (Dir. Nagisa Oshima, 1976); Spirited Away (Dir. Hayao Miasaki, 2001)
SCREENING:
Ran (Dir. Akira Kurosawa, 1985

INDIA AND THE TRANSFORMATION OF EUROPEAN CINEMA

WEEK XI
 
READING:
Chapter 6, "India: Cinema of Combination and Contradiction," pp. 237-51.
Show clips from Awaara aka The Vagabond (Dir. Raj Kapoor), Shree 420 (Dir. Raj Kapoor, 1955), and Pyaasa aka Thirst (Dir. Guru Dutt, 1957)
SCREENING:
Bombay aka Mumbai (Dir. Mani Ratnam, 1995)
WEEK XII
READING:
Chapter 6, "India: Cinema of Combination and Contradiction," pp. 251-58.
Show clips from Mother India aka Bharat Mata (Dir. Mehboob Khan, 1957); Pather Panchali aka Song of the Open Road (Dir. Satyajit Ray, 1955); The World of Apu aka Apur sansar (Dir. Satyajit Ray, 1959)
SCREENING:
Aparajito aka The Unvanquished (Dir. Satyajit Ray, 1956)
WEEK XIII
 
READING:
Chapter 6, "India: Cinema of Combination and Contradiction," pp. 258-67.
Show clips from Zanjeer aka The Chain (Dir. Prakash Mehra); Sholay aka Flames; and Amar, Akbar, Anthony (Dir. Manmohan Desai, 1977)
SCREENING:
Mr. Natwarlal (Dir. Ramesh Kumar, 1978)
WEEK XIV
 
READING:
Chapter 6, "India: Cinema of Combination and Contradiction," pp. 267-80.
Show clips from Ankur aka The Seedling (Dir. Shyam Benegal, 1974); Umrao Jaan (Dir. Muzzafar Ali, 1981); Lagaan aka Land Tax (Dir. Ashutosh Gowariker, 2001)
SCREENING:
Company (Dir. Ram Gopal Varma, 2002)
WEEK XV
SUMMARY: ARE THERE STILL NATIONAL FILM CULTURES?
READING:
"Introduction to Part II: "They Do it their Way," pp. 280-91.
Discuss the seeds of postnational film already in the films of Jean Cocteau, Federico Fellini, and Ram Gopal Varma.
SHOW CLIPS:
From some postnational films The Seventh Seal aka Det sjunde inseglet (Dir. Ingmar Bergman, 1957); The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie aka Le charme discret de la bourgeoisie (Dir. Luis Buñuel, 1972); Chungking Express aka Chung hing sam lam (Dir. Wong Kar-wai, 1994); Moolaade (Dir. Ousmane Sembène, 2004 ); The World aka Shijie (Dir. Jia Zhangke, 2004)

Syllabus A: A Survey of (Inter)national Film Cultures

Syllabus B: Compass Points Of International Film: France, Italy, Japan, And India

Syllabus C: World Cinema And Propaganda

Syllabus D: Postnational Cinema

Syllabus E: The Construction of Femininities In World Film: What is the Spectrum of International Images of Women?


Download All Syllabi (PDF)


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