Appendix I. Film and Media: A Chronology -- how to introduce?
[ start with the recent movies! ]
According to Monaco:
Movies = Economics, Film = Politics, Cinema= Esthetics
Amadeus (in class): "People make a mistake who think my art has come easily to me. Nobody has devoted so much time and thought to composition as I. There is not a famous master whose music I have not studied over and over." Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
"From the start we [Milos and Shaffer] agreed on one thing: we were not making an objective Life of Wolfgang Mozart. This cannot be stressed too strongly. Obviously Amadeus on stage was never intended to be a documentary biography of the composer, and the film is even less of one." Peter Shaffer [playwright of Amadeus] (more @ A. Notes
*2004: I can't escape the thought that both my film classes are for ACTORS! They do not have to shoot or edit film, but they must understand how it's done. My film directing class cannot go far into craft of filmmaking, this is the level is suitable for actors (or writers). I better think this through, because of the implications of the new address...
In our textbook "How to Read a Film" there are three different ways to start the class: Film Aesthetics, History of Cinema and Evolution of Technology. Which is the best approach? Only the class can tell.
80s -- present: genre. Action-Adventure, Sci-Fi, Disaster -- special effects (competion with videogames? ) [List] Plus, comedy? "What's up" instead of "what's new?"
No "auteur" films (or even movies)? But the level of the craftmanship is up...
What does it mean? Why did they lose interest in film language (forms) and as a result in new messages (or v.v)... 2-hour long commercials? Pop-culture and mass-media. [ p.383 distribution windows = the economics of movieland, the law of big numbers = money game ]
Worse is ahead, now -- digital age (chapter 7. p.518)
Bakhtin on genres: types
Myths: new and old (new as super-old)
[ read script.vtheatre.net/themes directory ]
[ main -- film.vtheatre.net? This is in theory, of course. Or in the future. Right now many pages are too new to have several levels of difficulty. Right now, all I can do is to use the htmlgears and Amazon to come with the recommended reading lists. ]
DVD (textbook) in class : and how to use it.
NB. Movies = monological (one dimenssional ideology) v. Film (dialogical).
What a resistence do I face with the concept that "entertainment" is most ideological communication! Since the esthetics level is so low in the movies, the political and economical levels are at play. How can't we understand that karate or porno movies are the biggest as propaganda? They are primite in esthetic structure -- and this make their ideological tendency so obvious! (We don't have such confusions with the old genre of fairytales, we know that they are morally defined in every aspect: story, heroes and etc.)
"Movies": commercials in class! (I better spend more time understand "movies" if I want to get to the essence of this class!)
Film as an Art + Technology (I + II textbook), but the problem with the textbook thta it has no case-studies (individual filmmakers, a few instead of many mentioned). I use Fillini, Kurosawa, Bergman, Tarkovsky
A History of the French New Wave Cinema (Wisconsin Studies in Film)
The French New Wave cinema is arguably the most fascinating of all film movements, famous for its exuberance, daring, and avant-garde techniques. A History of the French New Wave Cinema offers a fresh look at the social, economic, and aesthetic mechanisms that shaped French film in the 1950s, as well as detailed studies of the most important New Wave movies of the late 1950s and early 1960s.
Italian Film in the Light of Neorealism
This book contains essays on seventeen Italian films, released between 1945 and 1982, which are either Neorealist classics or demonstrate the influence of Neorealism on Italian films made after the movement (7 yrs. duration, according to Marcus) ended. Marcus strikes a fine balance of theory, literary criticism, history, and readability. The book is an informative and stimulating companion to several of the finest Italian films, and several classics of international cinema. The essays are on the following films: Part I: Neorealism Proper: Open City (d. Rossellini) ; Bicycle Thief (d. De Sica); Bitter Rice (d. De Santis); Umberto D. (d. De Sica) / Part II: Transitions Bread, Love, and Fantasy (d. Comencini); La Strada (d. Fellini); Senso (d. Visconti); Red Desert (d. Antonioni) / Part III: Return to Social Commentary: Il Posto (d. Olmi); Seduced and Abandoned (d. Germi); Teorema (d. Pasolini); Investigation of a Citizen Above Suspicion (d. Petri) / Part IV: Fascism and War Reconsidered The Conformist (d. Bertolucci); Love and Anarchy (d. Wertmuller); Christ Stopped at Eboli (d. Rosi); Night of the Shooting Stars (d. Paolo and Vittorio Taviani); We All Loved Each Other So Much (d. Scola) --- [back cover: Millicent Marcus is Associate Professor in the Department of French and Italian at the University of Texas, Austin] Marcus is now at the University of Pennsylvania. She makes a brief appearance on a supplement on the Malena (d. Giuseppe Tornatore) DVD.
Post-Theory: Reconstructing Film Studies (Wisconsin Studies in Film)
Dissatisfied with the vast body of film criticism bound to the theories of Sigmund Freud and his disciple Jacques Lacan, David Bordwell and Noel Carroll have compiled a group of essays that pursue alternative routes. "If there is an organizing principle to the volume," they write in their introduction, "it is that solid film scholarship can proceed without employing the psychoanalytic frameworks routinely mandated by the cinema studies establishment." These essays tackle films of many genres and from many countries. Looking through the lenses of the anthropologist, the economist, the social critic, the formalist, the aesthetician, the narratologist, and the cultural historian, the essayists in this volume offer original, diverse, and erudite perspectives on the art of the movies.
Sight, Sound, Motion: Applied Media Aesthetics Developed at San Francisco State University, this textbook isolates the five fundamental image elements of television and film--light and color, 2D space, 3D space, time/motion, and sound--examines their aesthetic characteristics and potentials, and structures them in their respective aesthetic fields. The fourth edition adds sections on inductive shot sequences, electronic cinema, and alternative storytelling techniques. ***