This class is an introductory class devoted to an overview of film techniques,
film vocabulary, and film history.
Because of the numerous film genres and movements that use childhood,
this introductory film course uses the theme of children and childhood
to link the film screenings. This class is not a special topics course,
but a general introduction to film analysis; therefore, I am not teaching
children’s culture through film, but am using films with children
and childhood themes to span the breadth of an introductory film course.
The tag line of this class is “Film Analysis: Through the Eyes
of a Child.” This which constructs a paradox with which to examine
our films and with which we ourselves approach the films. While theorists
like Laura Mulvey have discussed the camera as an active male gaze,
we will look films where the camera creates an intrinsically adult gaze
with the child as a subject. For this film class we will use films with
the theme of children and childhood to analyze and study both film history
and film theory. However, just because the films deal with childhood
does not mean that they are all about Happy Elves, woodland creatures,
and butterflies (think opening to A Series of Unfortunate Events). Some
of these films will be disturbing and require a mature audience. And
while we need a mature gaze to watch the films and to discuss them,
because this is an introductory class, we are all approaching the films
with the eyes of children unused to screening films in a rigorous way.
While this is NOT a film appreciation course, you will hopefully gain
a deeper appreciation of film as you study and analyze it. Also, this
IS a 6,000-word Gordon Rule class (per the Gordon Rule established by
the Florida Legislature), you must meet the writing volume minimums
in order to pass the course.
A special thanks to Kate,
who donated materials and ideas for this class.