I would arrange the films in rough chronological order:
Man with a Movie Camera (Vertov)Vampyr (Dreyer)Citizen Kane (Welles)Bicycle Thieves (De Sica)Tokyo Story (Ozu)Rear Window (Hitchcock)Last Year at Marienbad (Resnais)The Mirror (Tarkovsky)The Mirror (Panahi)Synecdoche, New York (Kaufman)
Eh, is it just me or does 10 days not sound like a very long time to truly ‘absorb’ 10 films, let alone a single multi-faceted film? At the minimum, I’d do 5 films, 2 days for each as a compromise, but 10 films in 10 days wouldn’t teach me anything other than forming just a general opinion. There needs to be discussion.
Anyway, here’s the first 10 days (because it would HAVE to be a 4 year course or something to be truly comprehensive, heh):
Faces (Cassavetes)Drunken Angel (Kurosawa)The Mirror (Tarkovsky)The Face of Another (Teshigahara)Winter Light (Bergman)
I think with these films, a pretty wide range of topics could be covered.
1) A Trip to the Moon (Meilies/Lumiere day)
2) Un chien andalou
3) Citizen Kane
4) The Seventh Seal
7) Blazing Saddles
8) Do the Right Thing
9) The Double Life of Veronique or Blue
10) The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
I don’t find it necessary to show movies such as Citizen Kane or even 2001: A Space Odyssey, where most people are in agreement they’re within the Pantheon and are some of the best ever made, if you wish to explore cinema as an art form, and why it’s worth people’s time and resources to seek out different types of movies.
The important part to me is to show something that could possibly spur their further interest in the medium. If you force 2001 onto an unsuspecting “student” of film without showing them something not in the same tone and style but that’s easily as worthwhile, there’s the possibility that they would shut the door on their further exploration if other “good movies” are like 2001.
When I was in high school, I watched 2001 in a film class, and I was just about the only student (out of 13 or 14) who actually enjoyed the experience, partially because I had already seen it. Citizen Kane was not part of that, because it hadn’t been released on DVD at that point (oddly enough, in 2001).
Along with 2001, what we ended up watching that semester (that I can remember) were:ChaplinThe Gold RushUnforgivenDouble IndemnityMildred PierceVertigoRear WindowPsycho (I think…)High NoonHoop Dreams
I’m sure there were a couple others, but I can’t friggin’ remember….. oh well.
Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography
Rocco and His Brothers
The Harder They Come
Battle of Algiers
Saturday Night and Sunday Morning
Week #1-Voyage to the Moon/ A Grain of Wheat/Muskateers of Pig Alley/A Day in the Life of A Coal Miner/Rain
Week #2- The Passion of Joan of Ac
Week #3- Strike/Un Chien Andalou
Week #4- M
Week #5- Cat People/Meshes in the Afternoon/clips from Singin in the Rain
Week #6- Bicycle Thieves/Night and Fog
Week #7- Sansho The Baliff/clips from Tokyo Story
Week #8- The Cloud-Capped Star/Clips from Awaara, Pyassa and Sholay
Week #9- Made in U.S.A./Toby Dammit (Fellini section from spirits of the dead)/79 Springs
Week #10- The Headless Woman/Clip from Inland Empire
THE MIRROR-Andrei Tarkovsky
THE PASSION OF JOAN OF ARC – Carl Th. Dreyer
LA COLLECTIONNEUSE – Eric Rohmer
MULHOLLAND DRIVE – David Lynch
VIVRE SA VIE – Jean-Luc Godard
LA DOLCE VITA – Federico Fellini
PERSONA – Ingmar Bergman
REGULAR LOVERS – Philippe Garrel
THE CORRIDOR – Sharunas Bartas
DOGVILLE – Lars von Trier
Based roughly on my college film years:
3) Citizen Kane
5) The 400 Blows
6) Easy Rider
7) Raging Bull
9) sex, lies and videotaope
10) There Will Be Blood – Just for the hell of it
I must need to re-visit NIGHT OF THE HUNTER.
I saw in in 1991 on the bigscreen at The Castro Theater in SFCA.
I walked away from it finding it fairly weird, silly and very unsatisfying.
Maybe I’ll get more out of it if re-watched today…?
george melies short a bunch of them
un chien andalou and l age d or
some footage from leni Riefenstahl
and an Argentinian short film : “lineas cruzadas”
You’ll need to have four different lists of ten, aimed at four different clusters of students.
It seems to me that nowadays, there would be different films appreciated by different camps:
ie., films to be savored by:
c). scriptwriters/English majors
d). film editors
For example, it seems that everyone here on MUBI is in agreement that Aronofsky’s REQUIEM FOR A DREAM has dynamite, seminal, ingenious modern new editing.
But I also hear over and over that many people here find it a tedious pain-in-the-ass to watch as an entertainment.
I would centre the course on David Bordwell’s book Figures Traced in Light, to help students become attuned to watching the how of a film, beyond the editing and fancy effects and socio-psychological theorising
DAY 1 – CQ (2001)
DAY 2 – PEEPING TOM (1960)
DAY 3 – THE PURPLE ROSE OF CAIRO (1985)
DAY 4 – ALL THAT HEAVEN ALLOWS (1955)
DAY 5 – ALI FEAR EATS THE SOUL (1974)
DAY 6 – BLUE VELVET (1986)
DAY 7 – DOGVILLE (2003)
DAY 8 – VARIETY (1983)
DAY 9 – I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE (1978)
DAY 10 – SUSPIRIA (1977)
Night of the Hunter is genius
Oh, I forgot to mention that my focus would be on women in film, but not necessarily feminist issues. Whatever comes up. I actually meant to put Variety after The Purple Rose of Cairo, because those movies are similar, like all the other pairings are similar in some way.
Remember, the key word in the thread title is “basic”. That said, your students would undoubtedly bring a healthy appreciation and, at least, rudimentary comprehension of cinema and storytelling to the class.
Since it’s ten days, I reckon you’d have more than enough time to show at least twenty films.
Day 1: Fritz Lang’s “Metropolis” and Charles Chaplin’s “Modern Times”
The most influential science fiction movie of all-time is a good place to start, plus I think at least one silent movie should be included, whereas Chaplin’s film is a near-silent film that I believe would go well with “Metropolis” given the similar themes explored in these two works.
Day 2: Stanley Donen’s “Singin’ In The Rain” and Bob Fosse’s “Cabaret”
Two musicals, two different styles: the first is the more surrealistic (and more frowned upon by today’s audiences) type musical where people burst into a rush of song and dance in the middle of the street, inside someone’s office, wherever it might be. The second is the more realistic musical, where the songs are contained inside a nightclub venue, yet in both films listed above, the songs reflect character emotions and help advance the story. I believe Stanley Donen’s film would also educate people about the difficulties faced by movie studios in the transition from silent films to talkies, whereas the latter is a must-show film about how to use editing most effectively.
Day 3: Alexander Mackendrick’s “Sweet Smell of Success” and Sidney Lumet and Paddy Chayefsky’s “Network”
Dialogue-driven films featuring the finest possible acting, these two movies make excellent companion pieces to each other in showing the persuasive power of newspaper jounalism and the overwhelming force of commercial television. Brilliant films for showing screenwriting at its best and how cinemaphotography can establish the mood of a film.
Day 4: Don Siegel’s “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” and Phil Kaufman’s “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”
This would show how to remake a classic movie and make an allegorical science fiction horror film, with comparisons between a small town sci-fi horror versus a modern style big city horror film. Also, how to make story driven/psychological sci-fi horror rather than special effects laden sci-fi horror.
Day 5: Toshio Matsumoto’s “Funeral Parade of Roses” and Stanley Kubrick’s “A Clockwork Orange”
The former had such a visual and aural influence upon the latter, I believe showing these films together would make for a fascinating experience, plus I believe the course should include at least one Stanley Kubrick film.
Day 6: Věra Chytilová’s “Daisies” and Dennis Hopper’s “Easy Rider” followed by “Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss” by Melvin Van Peebles.
The first is one of my favourite movies and has an anarchic feel, no real narrative structure, rather experimental and is probably unlike any other film to which most people are exposed. The second is a more structured film yet is still experimental and has the same psychedelic feel as the former work. These are two VERY different “rebellion” style films from different parts of the world yet both fit into the 1960s counter-establishment subgenre of cinema. I’ve included the third film as a further example of what can be done on the proverbial shoestring budget.
Day 7: Ridley Scott’s “Blade Runner” and Paul Verhoeven’s “Robocop”
These films contain a wealth of symbolism and are timeless, stylish, intelligent science fiction movies. I believe both films are also extremely valuable in terms of their soundtrack elements.
Day 8: Akira Kurosawa’s “Seven Samurai” and Sergio Leone’s “The Good, The Bad and the Ugly”
It would be an extremely long day with multiple intermissions. However, these are two of the most influential landmark films in history and I simply could not go past them when teaching film appreciation.
Day 9: Orson Welles’ “Citizen Kane” and Martin Scorsese’s “Raging Bull”
You might as well show the former so people can make up there own minds whether it’s the greatest film ever made, yet the cinemaphotography and editing are so masterful, it’s difficult not to appreciate it. The second film is an excellent example of a modern use of black and white cinemaphotography and also has wonderful editing.
Day 10: Nadia Tass’ “Malcolm” and Jeremy Sims’ “Last Train to Freo”
Since the class would be held in Australia, it would be only logical to show two of my favourite Australian films. One is a very well known Australian movie, whereas the other never really received the respect it deserved but could very well develop a cult following as it was released during the past decade. Sims shows what can be achieved with a good idea and a small, talented cast.
From the above you would have a diverse range of cinema, and of course no such grouping film-for-film is guaranteed to please everyone, but it would definitely make an excellent crash course in cinema. Undoubtedly, one with little exposure to film apart from mainstream Hollywood from the past 20 years would gain plenty from experiencing the above fare.
Well, if you’re going into that much detail, I’ll see what I can do. Anyway, yeah, I get the “basic” thing (if you were talking to me), but I figured adding a theme would help the class focus. Let’s just say that each class will run 4 hours. I guess these films cover a good number of bases, but let me see if I can tie all of them together (I’m just making this up, mostly):
INTRO. TO CINEMA WITH A FOCUS ON THE ROLE OF WOMEN AND COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS (YOU KNOW, FOR BEGINNERS)
OK, the first two days will be about movies that view women through the eye of a filmmaker, so I guess that makes them objects. We have CQ, about a film editor who falls into directing after the original director was fired. He pretty much lives in a fantasy world of film, and only really thinks about his girlfriend when he’s filming her. And then there’s the actress who he fantasizes about. Yeah. Next we have Peeping Tom, about a guy who films woman as he killing them. He also watches movies his father made that show his father performing fear experiments on him. Lots of comparisons to be made, right? It’ll get their critical thinking skills going.
DAY 1 – CQ (2001)
DAY 2 – PEEPING TOM (1960)
These two movies have women who have a fantasy life through film. In Purple Rose of Cairo, we have a woman who is victimized by a man in real life, so she loses herself at the movies. In Variety, there’s a woman who takes a job at an adult theatre theatre, only to develop a fascination with porn. So she recites porn scenarios to her boyfiend, who is freaked out, and starts sort of stalking this other guy. Tons of stuff here, I bet.
DAY 3 – THE PURPLE ROSE OF CAIRO (1985)
DAY 4 – VARIETY (1983)
This’ll be a look at how the same story can be interpreted by different filmmakers, and how the woman’s age and social status are portrayed. And probably some other stuff.
DAY 5 – ALL THAT HEAVEN ALLOWS (1955)
DAY 6 – ALI FEAR EATS THE SOUL (1974)
Well, we can certainly talk about the extremely different styles of the films, and how that affects the viewing experience. But, anyway, we got two movies about women being victimized. But in some weird consensual way. Sort of. We’ll work this out.
DAY 7 – DOGVILLE (2003)
DAY 8 – BLUE VELVET (1986)
OK, for the grand finale. Two horror flicks, that once again have wildly different syles. In one, the monsters are a gang of rapists and the other we have a coven of witches. Is the realistic scenario in I Spit On Your Grave more exploitative than the fantastic one in Suspiria? Which is the more feminist picture? Yeah, probably lots of arguments.
DAY 9 – SUSPIRIA (1977)
DAY 10 – I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE (1978)
This could get crazy. Much will be learned.
I would make each class a full-day affair (eight hours) with films and discussions, guest speakers, catering, all held at a big cinema. Plus I’d have the Rockettes. Lots of Rockettes.
Day 1 : An Initiation to the Japanese New Wave
Fragments of :Throw Away Your Books, Rallye in the StreetsDeath by HangingEros + MassacrePitfallThe Insect Woman
Day 2: The Expression of Romanticism and Melancholia in Film
Fragments of:I Can No Longer Hear the GuitarRebel Without a CauseA River Named Titash
Day 3: Individual Nostalgia, Mass Memory
Fragments of:ShoahMirrorWaltz With Bashir
[I’ll continue later]
My class will be entitled:
YO, KIDS, DIS BE SOME STRAIGHT-UP FREAKY-ASS SHIT THASS SHO’ ‘NUFF GONN’ FREAK Y’ALL ASS OUT, WERD.
1. PORKY’S I
2. PORKY’S II
3. DUDE, WHERE’S MY CAR?
4. HAROLD & KUMAR GO TO WHITE CASTLE
5. AUGUST UNDERGROUND’S MORDUM
6. BRITNEY SPEARS—CROSSROADS
7. CITIZEN KANE in 3D
8. TOKYO STORY STARRING WILL SMITH
9. TYLER PERRY’S WHY DID I GET MARRIED, TOO
10. (refreshments in the lobby)
That’s an interesting approach, Edwin. I’m looking forward to the rest.
I see you’ve meanwhile added the film titles, David. I still need to see the Will Smith version of “Tokyo Story”, but the other films are well-known classics. Let me know when your class is about to begin.
Shadows Of Forgotten Ancestors
We would watch all of these movies twice.
In no particular order:
The Bicycle ThiefCitizen KaneBreathlessNorth by NorthwestAu Hasard BalthazarAnnie HallMy Own Private IdahoThe GodfatherWings of Desire2001: A Space Odyssey
Granted I made this list in about four minutes.
What I actually did (in more than ten days):
Take Care of Your Scarf, Tatiana – put everyone to sleep
The Umbrellas of Cherbourg – decently received
Bigger Than Life – badly received,ended up doing a running commentary
Punishment Park – well-received
Full Frontal – the first half of it was decently received before we were chased out of our room
Woman on the Beach – everyone was asleep by the time we were chased out of our room
Cut – well-received
Je vous salue, Sarajevo – no one understood it
A Corner in Wheat – put everyone to sleep
Shooting at the Moon – no one got it
Four Heads are Better Than One – well-received
Un chien andalou – bizarre enough to entertain
I taught a couple cinema history classes earlier this year. Most of the students were film majors, and I wanted to focus on films that they would not likely have seen on their own (with a few exceptions). I would have included Michael Snow’s Wavelength in this set, but of course it doesn’t exist on legally-released DVDs, which for better or worse was the medium of choice for the class…
Window Water Baby Moving: Stan Brakhage, 13 min.
The Passenger: Michelangelo Antonioni, 119 min.
Quiet Rage: The Stanford Prison Experiment: Philip G. Zimbardo, 50 min.
Film About a Woman Who: Yvonne Reiner, 90 min.
True Stories: David Byrne, 90 min.
Babel: Alejandro González Iñárritu, 143 min.
Viola: “Hatsu-Yume” (First Dream) , 56 min.
Early Documentaries: Auguste and Louis Lumière, 10 min.
Early Documentaries: The Edison Company, 10 min.
A Trip to the Moon: George Melies, 14 min.
Battleship Potempkin: Sergei Eisenstein, 75 min.
Weekend: Jean-Luc Goddard, 105 min.
Swimming to Cambodia: Jonathan Demme, 87 min.
Youth Without Youth: Frances Ford Coppola, 125 min.
Films by Stan Brakhage, 120 min.
The Spider’s Strategem: Bernardo Bertolucci, 100 min.
Ryan: Chris Landreth, 14 min.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button: David Fincher, 166 min.
Ontological-Hysteric Theater, Vol. 1 (2008): Richard Foreman, 140 min.