MISCELLANEOUS COURSE SYLLABI, EXERCISES, AND PAPER TOPICS FROM PROF. CARNEY'S CLASSES. THIS MATERIAL REPRESENTS ONLY A TINY SAMPLE OF THE AVAILABLE COURSE HANDOUTS, BUT IS PROVIDED TO GIVE AN IDEA OF HIS INTERESTS AND APPROACHES TO FILM AND THE OTHER ARTS.

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Spring 2009
COM FT 554 H1
Film Studies Special Topic

Lessons from the Temporal Arts for Directors, Writers, and Critics
Mr. Carney
Tues. and Thurs. 5:30 – 7:00 P.M.
Room: KCB 103 (the Kenmore Classroom Building, across the street near Kenmore Square)

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Mr. Carney’s office hours (Room 223C, College of Communication):
Tues. and Thurs. 12 – 1 PM, and by appointment
Teaching Assistant: Caroline Elliott
Teaching Assistant’s office hours (Room 223C, College of Communication): Wednesday 12–1.

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A consideration of what other arts can teach the filmmaker, screenwriter, and film commentator about the expressive possibilities of film, and more generally, a consideration of how works of art are organized and function.

Some questions to be considered: What is form? What is style? How are scenes in literature and drama shaped and organized? How do fictional works differ from non-fictional works in their presentation of experience? How are temporal arts (e.g. short stories, plays, and works of music) organized differently from atemporal arts (e.g. paintings and works of sculpture)? How do painters use lighting effects, the composition of the frame space, and the location of frame lines to organize their works? How and in what ways can other arts reveal expressive possibilities, subjects, and methods that can help filmmakers shape their work and critics understand it?

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Required texts to be purchased (all available at the bookstore):

Eudora Welty, The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty (Harvest Books/Harcourt Brace Jovanovich), ISBN 978-0-1-5618921-7
Joyce Carol Oates, Short Stories (a course packet handed out in class, to be returned after use)
Anton Chekhov, Chekhov: Four Major Plays, translated by Curt Columbus (Ivan R. Dee), ISBN 978-1-5-6663626–1
D.H. Lawrence, Selected Stories (Penguin Classics, USA), ISBN 978-0-1-4144165-8
Alice Munro - Selected Stories (Vintage / Random House), ISBN 978-0-6-7976674-2

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CLASS MEETING SCHEDULE

Thurs.

Jan. 15

Reading with your ears. The sound of sense. Stevie Smith, “Autumn” and “Not Waving but Drowning,” and Robert Frost, “Mending Wall” and “Dust of Snow”

Tues.

Jan. 20

Eudora Welty, “Lily Daw and the Three Ladies,” “Petrified Man,” “Why I Live at the P.O.”

Have prepared a dramatic monologue as assigned.

Thurs.

Jan. 22

Eudora Welty, “Death of a Traveling Salesman” and “Moon Lake.” (Note the length of the latter; budget your time accordingly.)

Tues.

Jan. 27

Eudora Welty, “The Wide Net,” “The Winds.”

Thurs.

Jan. 29

MFA event (to be announced). Eudora Welty, ““A Worn Path” and “June Recital.” Paper #1 due.

Tues.

Feb. 3

Joyce Carol Oates, “The Undesirable Table,” “Is Laughter Contagious?” Time and experience.

Thurs.

Feb. 5

Joyce Carol Oates, “The Missing Person”

Tues.

Feb. 10

Joyce Carol Oates, “The Goose Girl”

Thurs.

Feb. 12

Joyce Carol Oates, “American Abroad”

Tues.

Feb. 17

*** No class – Substitute Monday schedule ***

Thurs.

Feb. 19

Joyce Carol Oates, “June Birthing.” Paper #2 due.

Tues.

Feb. 24

Bending the notes, changing the meaning: “I Heard it on the Grapevine” (Otis Redding and Gladys Knight); “Ain’t Misbehavin’” (Fats Waller and Louis Armstrong). Theme and variations: “The Man I Love” and “Embraceable You” (Art Tatum and others). Bring in examples from your own collection.

Thurs.

Feb. 26

Mozart: Theme and variation. Imitation. Modulation. “Counter–reading.”

Tues.

Mar. 3

Have read Anton Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya. Prepare a dramatic monologue as assigned. Dramatic structure: theme and variation. Covering–up. Subtexts.

Thurs.

Mar. 5

Anton Chekhov, Uncle Vanya.

March

7– 14

*** Spring Break ***

Tues.

Mar. 17

Have read Anton Chekhov, The Three Sisters and The Cherry Orchard. Paper #3 due.

Thurs.

Mar. 19

Anton Chekhov, The Three Sisters and The Cherry Orchard.

Tues.

Mar. 24

Anton Chekhov The Three Sisters and The Cherry Orchard

Thurs.

Mar. 26

Anton Chekhov The Three Sisters and The Cherry Orchard

Tues.

Mar. 31

Anton Chekhov, The Three Sisters and The Cherry Orchard

Thurs.

Apr. 2

D.H. Lawrence, “Odour of Chrysanthemums” and “The White Stocking”

Tues.

Apr. 7

D.H. Lawrence, “The Blind Man,” “New Eve and Old Adam,” “The Horse–Dealer’s Daughter”

Thurs.

Apr. 9

(Passover) D.H. Lawrence, “Sun,” “The Man Who Loved Islands,” “Things.” Paper #3 due.

Tues.

Apr. 14

Dance as interpretation: Paul Taylor, “Esplanade,” “Field of Grass”

Thurs.

Apr. 16

Dance as interpretation: George Balanchine, Jewels (“Emeralds” and “Diamonds”), The Four Temperaments, Stravinsky Violin Concerto.

Tues.

Apr. 21

Alice Munro, “Walker Brothers Cowboy,” “Dance of the Happy Shades,” “Postcard,” “Differently.” Exercise: a comparison of Alice Munro and Joyce Carol Oates

Thurs.

Apr. 23

*** No class – Substitute Monday schedule ***

Tues.

Apr. 28

Alice Munro, “Something I’ve Been Meaning to Tell You,” “The Beggar Maid,” “The Moons of Jupiter.” Paper #4 due.

Thurs.

Apr. 30

Alice Munro, “The Progress of Love,” “Friend of My Youth,” and read the “Introduction” to Munro’s Selected Stories.

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The Rules of the Game:

Attendance is required and will be taken. (If you are unable to make a class for an exceptional reason, you must let the T.A. know at least one class prior to the absence and receive permission.) Each absence that is not approved and authorized will result in your final evaluation being lowered. Promptness is mandatory to avoid disrupting class.

When you enter the classroom for the start of class, please have already attended to all personal needs (medications, rest room visits, drinks of water, food, need to smoke, cell phone calls or PDA entries, etc.) to avoid distracting other members of the class or yourself. Please note that your presence, attention, and focus is just as important when a film is being screened as it is during a discussion. Translation: a screening is not a time to go out to make a phone call, check–up on something, meet someone, etc.

As noted in the final paragraph below, all electronic devices must be turned off prior to the beginning of class. The policy is dictated not only by the distraction to others from the noise or light (e.g. the ringing of a cell phone or the light from a laptop screen), but by copyright laws regarding the making of unauthorized recordings. (The same prohibitions on the use of electronic devices would apply if you were attending a ballet, a play, a movie, an opera, or any other kind of performance in a theater.)

A note about the absolute importance of keeping up with the readings and any other outside class assignments. This is a course in artistic appreciation. Its focus is not on criticism, theory, or history, but the expressive nuances of specific works of art. Our “texts” for this class are the works of art – the poems, stories, plays, etc. – that are on the reading or viewing list. You should treat every in–class event or out–of–class assignment with the same intensity of focus and seriousness of that you would treat reading a chapter in a history or biology textbook. That means completing all reading or viewing assignments; devoting your complete attention to the text; taking notes while reading or viewing something; reviewing the text in preparation for class discussion or before and re–reading or reviewing it after discussion; revising your notes in the light of subsequent understandings. If you do not keep up with the reading or other assignments outside of class you will not be able to benefit from classroom discussions. Please budget your time accordingly.

You will have two major outside–of–class duties/responsibilities:

1) You are responsible for completing a number of written or performed exercises assigned in one class and due in the following one, and writing four papers in the 3–5 page range. Topics will be discussed and promulgated during the course of the semester, based on issues that come up in class discussions (or subjects that we do not have time to deal with adequately in class discussion). No extensions may be given on any of these assignments, since many of them will be the basis for class discussions on the dates that they are due.

Note that some of the in–class exercises will be collected on the day they are due, others will not (and will only be used as the basis of discussion in the class in which they are due). However, whether they are collected or not, all exercises and papers should be retained in a folder and turned in at the end of the semester.

2) You are responsible for several outside viewing, listening, or reading assignments which will be promulgated during specific classes, usually for completion by the next class. Most of these assignments will involve quick turn–arounds. Some will require consulting reserve material in Mugar Library.

With regard to the preceding duties: Note that the screening schedule and exercise and paper due dates on the syllabus are subject to change without notice, in response to things that come up in class discussion. If you miss a class, come in late, or leave early, be certain you have contacted the T.A. or another student to familiarize yourself with any changes in the assignments for the subsequent class.

Also please note that this is not a “paperless” course. Material should be submitted and brought to class in hard copy.

Any wit, wisdom, and passion you contribute to class discussion will count as “extra credit” to raise your grade. The reverse is also true: Missed classes, tardiness, inadequate preparation (e.g. failing to finish the reading assignments and consequently being unable to contribute to class discussion), inattentiveness during discussions or screenings, and lackluster participation will lower your grade.

A general recommendation: Be expressively brave. Use your exercises, papers, and in–class comments to formulate and test new ideas. Consciousness cannot precede expression. Use class discussion to raise and refine your consciousness.

There will be no mid–term or final exam. Your final evaluation will be based on your class participation and preparation, your written and performed exercises, and your papers. Proportionally, half of your grade will be based on your papers and the other half on your exercises and in–class performance.


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Spring 2009
COM FT 554 H1
Film Studies Special Topic:

Lessons from the other arts
Mr. Carney

Exercise #1: The sound of sense: “Lily Daw and the Three Ladies”

Working in groups of 2, 3, or 4, your assignment is to prepare a brief dramatic presentation based on a passage from Eudora Welty’s “Lily Daw and the Three Ladies.” (20 – 40 lines total should be sufficient, and the chosen passage may include “non–spoken” authorial interpolations, which you may either read out loud or skip over in your presentation. Do whatever makes the meaning most clear to a listener.)

The purpose of the exercise is for you and your group to use dramatic performance to identify, interpret, and comment on the voices that contribute to the meaning of Welty’s story.

Separate from preparing and rehearsing your oral presentation with the members of your group, each actor should individually and separately write a 100–word statement (approximately one long paragraph, or half of a typed and double–spaced page) summarizing his or her understanding of the meaning of the different voices in the story, and explaining how the meaning of the story is expressed by the interplay of voices within it.

Due at the start of class, Tuesday, January 20.

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Spring 2009
COM FT 554 H1
Film Studies Special Topic:
Lessons from the other arts
Mr. Carney

Paper #1: Pondering the fundamental structure of a three–character drama

Eudora Welty’s short story, “Death of a Traveling Salesman,” presents a series of surprises or discoveries. Provide an appreciation of the story in which you discuss two things:

1) How the story uses the consciousness of the character of Bowman, the traveling salesman, to create drama. In other words, discuss what Bowman’s dramatic function is. Why does Welty make him the way he is? How does the story turn the event involving his car breaking down in the road and him needing help into something else – into a completely other set of events?

2) How does Welty order or orchestrate the order of the surprises and discoveries? Is there a sequence or progression? If so, what is the effect?

A thoughtful presentation will not necessarily separate its responses to items 1 and 2.

Length: Two to three pages, double–spaced and typed (500 – 700 words).

Due: Thursday, January 29

*****

Note: Our class meeting on this day will consist of attending a screening at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts (Remis Auditorium) to view the work of two Boston University student–artists.

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Spring 2009
COM FT 567 A1
The Elements of Style
Mr. Carney

Tues. 2–4 PM and Thurs. 2–5 PM

Classrooms: SED 208 (Tuesday) and Comm B–25 (Thursday)

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Mr. Carney’s office hours (Room 223C, College of Communication):

Tues. and Thurs. 12 – 1:30 PM and by appointment

Teaching Assistant: Jessica Greeley

Teaching Assistant’s office hours (Room 223C, College of Communication): TBA

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What is style? Why do films have styles? Why don’t they just present “reality?” Isn’t that the goal? Why is style there? What does style do?

Where does style come from? How is it created? What forces affect it? How does a director develop a distinctive visual and acoustic style? How does a writer develop a narrative style? How does an actor develop a performative style? How does a critic or reviewer appreciate and understand cinematic style?

This course will use brief excerpts and longer sections from several dozen cinematic masterworks to study the basic building–blocks of cinematic style – the use of framing, lighting, shot selection, sound design, performance, scenic and narrative organization, and other visual, acoustic, and performative strategies to create cinematic meaning. We will consider a wide range of stylistic resources available to the cinematic artist and the effects of stylistic decisions on the viewer’s experience and understanding of the work.

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CLASS SCHEDULE

Thurs.

Jan. 15

Introduction: Questions of style. The fallacy of form and content:

Thomas Hart Benton and John Singer Sargent; Richard Kern, the Lazard brothers, A Lobster Tale, and David Ball, Honey; Godfrey Reggio, Koyaaisquatsi; Michael Curtiz, Casablanca

Tues.

Jan. 20

Exercise on Casablanca due. What does style do?

What is the world? What is our relation to it? Jacques Tati, Playtime

Thurs.

Jan. 22

Exercise on Playtime due. What is the world? What is our relation to it? Pt. 2. Jacques Tati, Playtime; Buster Keaton, The General.

Tues.

Jan. 27

What is the world? How do we define ourselves? Frank Capra, It’s a Wonderful Life (excerpts). Carl Dreyer, Day of Wrath; Orson Welles, The Trial. Have viewed Day of Wrath at Mugar Library before this class.

Thurs.

Jan. 29

Exercise on Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life due. How do we define ourselves? Orson Welles, The Trial (excerpts). Carl Dreyer, Day of Wrath.

Tues.

Feb. 3

Exercise on Day of Wrath due. How do we define ourselves? Gregory Ratoff, Intermezzo.

Thurs.

Feb. 5

Who are we? Gregory Ratoff, Intermezzo and Jean Negulesco, Humoresque (excerpts)

Tues.

Feb. 10

Who are we? Harold Pinter and Peter Hall, The Homecoming

Thurs.

Feb. 12

Who are we? Harold Pinter and Peter Hall, The Homecoming; David Hugh Jones, Betrayal

Tues.

Feb. 17

*** No class – Substitute Monday schedule ***

Thurs.

Feb. 19

Who are we and what is the nature of our relationship to others? Jean Renoir, The Rules of the Game

z

Tues.

Feb. 24

What is the nature of our relationship to others? David Ball, Honey; John Cassavetes, Faces

Thurs.

Feb. 26

Robert Bresson, Femme Douce (A Gentle Woman)

Tues.

Mar. 3

Mike Leigh, Bleak Moments and Meantime (excerpts)

Thurs.

Mar. 5

Barbara Loden, Wanda and Arthur Penn, Bonnie and Clyde

March

7– 14

*** Spring Break ***

Tues.

Mar. 17

Rodrigo Garcia, Nine Lives and Tom Noonan, What Happened Was (excerpts)

Thurs.

Mar. 19

Rodrigo Garcia, Nine Lives and Tom Noonan, What Happened Was (excerpts)

Tues.

Mar. 24

Roberto Rossellini, Voyage in Italy; David Lean, Brief Encounter, and Irving Rapper, Now, Voyager (excerpts)

Thurs.

Mar. 26

Roberto Rossellini, Voyage in Italy; David Lean, Brief Encounter, and Irving Rapper, Now, Voyager (excerpts); Mark Rappaport, The Scenic Route

Tues.

Mar. 31

Andrei Tarkovsky, Stalker

Thurs.

Apr. 2

Andrei Tarkovsky, Stalker and The Sacrifice (excerpts)

Tues.

Apr. 7

Billy Wilder, Some Like It Hot; Peter Bogdanovich, What’s Up Doc?

Thurs.

Apr. 9

Billy Wilder, Some Like It Hot; Preston Sturges, The Palm Beach Story

Tues.

Apr. 14

Charles Burnett, Killer of Sheep; Vittorio DeSica, Bicycle Thieves

Thurs.

Apr. 16

Charles Burnett, Killer of Sheep; Vittorio DeSica, Bicycle Thieves; Shoeshine; Rosselini, Germany Year Zero

Tues.

Apr. 21

Chantel Ackerman, Window Shopping

Thurs.

Apr. 23

*** No class – Substitute Monday schedule ***

Tues.

Apr. 28

Abbas Kiarostami, And Life Goes On …

Thurs.

Apr. 30

Conclusions: What is reality? What is style? Where does it come from? Why does it matter?

=============================================================

The Rules of the Game:

Attendance is required and will be taken. (If you are unable to make a class for an exceptional reason, you must let the T.A. know at least one class prior to the absence and receive permission.) Each absence that is not approved and authorized will result in your final evaluation being lowered.

Promptness is mandatory to avoid disrupting class discussions or screenings. (The light streaming in from opening and closing doors and the noise of finding seats during discussions or screenings is distracting.)

When you enter the classroom for the start of class, please have already attended to all personal needs (medications, rest room visits, drinks of water, food, need to smoke, cell phone calls or PDA entries, etc.) to avoid distracting other members of the class or yourself. Please note that your presence, attention, and focus is just as important when a film is being screened as it is during a discussion. Translation: a screening is not a time to go out to make a phone call, check–up on something, meet someone, etc.

I will provide a brief “rest break” at the approximate halfway point in every class where there is time to do so.

As noted in the final paragraph below, all electronic devices must be turned off prior to the beginning of class. The policy is dictated not only by the distraction to others from the noise or light (e.g. the ringing of a cell phone or the light from a laptop screen), but by copyright laws regarding the making of unauthorized recordings. (The same prohibitions on the use of electronic devices would apply if you were attending a ballet, a play, a movie, an opera, or any other kind of performance in a theater.)

A note about the absolute importance of screenings. This is a course in artistic appreciation. Its focus is not on criticism, theory, or history, but on the expressive nuances of specific works of art. That means that our “texts” for this class are not essays or books or readings about works of art, movements, or periods; but are the works of art themselves. Our texts are the films or other works of art that we are engaged in studying and discussing. On rare occasions, I may hand out an essay or two about a work of art that we are discussing, but in general you should treat every in–class or out–of–class screening event with the same intensity of focus and seriousness with which you would treat reading a textbook chapter about a subject. That means devoting all of your attention to the artistic text; taking notes while reading or viewing something; and re–reading or reviewing the artistic text (where possible) before and after the class discussion of it.

You will have two major outside–of–class duties/responsibilities:

1) You are responsible for writing several papers. Topics will be discussed and promulgated during the course of the semester, based on subjects that come up in class discussions (or subjects that we do not have time to deal with adequately in class). No extensions may be given.

2) You are responsible for several outside viewing assignments which will be promulgated during specific classes, usually for completion by the next class. Several of these assignments will involve quick turn–arounds. Several will require viewing videos in the basement viewing area of Mugar Library. Some of these exercises will be collected on the day they are due, others will not (and will only be used as the basis of discussion in the class in which they are due). However, whether they are collected or not, all exercises and papers should be retained in a folder and turned in at the end of the semester.

With regard to the preceding duties: Note that the screening schedule and exercise and paper due dates on the syllabus are subject to change without notice. If you miss a class, come in late, or leave early, be certain you have contacted the T.A. or another student to familiarize yourself with any changes in the assignments for the subsequent class.

Also please note that this is not a “paperless” course. Material should be submitted and brought to class in hard copy.

Any wit, wisdom, and passion you bring to class discussion will count as “extra credit” to raise your grade. The reverse is also true: Missed classes, tardiness, inattentiveness during classes or screenings, and lackluster class participation will lower your grade.

A general point: Be expressively brave. Use your exercises, papers, and class comments to formulate and test new ideas. Consciousness cannot precede expression. Use class discussion to refine your consciousness.

There will be no mid–term or final exam. Your final evaluation will be based on your class participation and attentiveness, your exercises, and your papers. Proportionally, half of your grade will be based on your papers and the other half will be based on your exercises and in–class performance.

*************************************************************************************

Spring 2009
COM FT 567 A1
The Elements of Style
Mr. Carney

Exercise #1: The finale of Michael Curtiz’s Casablanca

Review the shot-sequence near the end of Casablanca beginning with the shot in which an airport guard says: "The Lisbon plane taking off in 10 minutes…,” and ending with the shot in which Major Renault says: "Well, I was right. You are a sentimentalist."

Using sheets of standard paper turned sideways, as the heads of four parallel columns across the top of the page write the following: SHOT NUMBER, THE WORLD, THE MOVIE, THE MEANING. Thus:

\

Shot #

The World (Reality)

The Movie

(Style)

The Meaning

(Feeling or Thought)

       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       

etc.

     

As you watch the sequence, in each column from left to right, for each and every shot, fill in:

1) THE SHOT NUMBER (a running count):

A numerical count of the shots starting with the number “1” for the first shot.

2) THE WORLD / REALITY (what is physically seen and heard):

Across from its number, write a description of what you see or hear in the shot. Describe all important visible or audible events involving people, props, objects, worldly sounds, etc. that matters.

3) THE MOVIE / STYLE (how experience is shaped cinematically):

Next to the worldly facts and events, include a description of all specific cinematic events or stylistic effects in the shot that matter--e.g. the position and distance of the camera, movement of camera (if any), how the shot is framed, any special lighting effects, editing effects, the felt length of the shot and its temporal relation to previous or subsequent shots, points of view represented, musical orchestrations, etc..

4) THE MEANING / FEELING OR THOUGHT:

Across from that, write a description of the emotional / psychological / intellectual / cinematic meaning of the shot, telling how you know that that is its meaning by relating the content of the shot (#2) and the style of the film (#3) to the meaning of the moment (i.e. relate entries 2 and 3 to arrive at the emotional and psychological meaning of the film and explain what is being done by the way the experience is being presented).

*

Generalization/Conclusion: Based on the preceding exercise, write a paragraph describing the effect of Casablanca’s style. What is the film’s understanding of reality? What does the style do to us as viewers? What does it tell us about life? How does Casablanca imagine experience?

This exercise may be neatly handwritten, and can most likely be completed in a total length of two to four pages. Due at the start of class, January 20.

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Spring 2009
COM FT 554 E1
Film Studies Special Topic
The Films of Yasujiro Ozu
Tues. and Thurs. 9–11:30
Mr. Carney

Room: B–05 (Comm basement screening room)

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Mr. Carney’s office hours (Room 223C, College of Communication):

Tues. and Thurs. 12 – 1 PM and by appointment

Teaching Assistant: Kurt Hagstrom

Teaching Assistant’s office hours (Room 223C, College of Communication): TBA

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An intensive study and analysis of the major masterworks of one of the supreme geniuses in the history of film – the films of Japanese director Yasujiro Ozu (1903–1963). We will view and discuss all of his major sound work, including the following films and others: Floating Weeds, Early Summer, Tokyo Story, Autumn Afternoon, Ohayo (Good Morning), Equinox Flower, Late Spring, Tokyo Twilight, Record of a Tenement Gentleman, and others. (See the list attached to the final pages of the syllabus for a complete filmography.)

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Video availability: Beyond the in–class screenings and the usual internet rental sources (Netflix, etc), the following Ozu titles are available for viewing from the reserve desk in Mugar Library. Videos on reserve do not circulate outside of the library, but may be taken to the basement viewing room (otherwise known as “the dungeon”) or viewed on your laptop in the building. Note that even if you have the software to do it, these or other films should not be copied in violation of copyright laws.

There are ten VHS tapes and 5 DVDs of each of the following titles (listed in reverse chronological order):

(The Story of) Floating Weeds
Good Morning
Equinox Flower
Tokyo Story
Early Summer

Late Spring

There are three to six DVD copies of each of the following titles (listed in reverse chronological order):

Autumn Afternoon
End of Summer
Late Autumn
(The Story of) Floating Weeds (both versions are on the Criterion edition)
Good Morning (ask for the Criterion edition where available)
Equinox Flower (ask for the Criterion edition where available)
Tokyo Twilight
Early Spring (ask for the Criterion edition where available)
Tokyo Story (ask for the Criterion edition where available)
Early Summer (ask for the Criterion edition where available)
Late Spring (ask for the Criterion edition where available)
Passing Fancy (available on: Three Family Comedies)
I Was Born But (available on: Three Family Comedies)
Tokyo Chorus (available on: Three Family Comedies)
Note that there will be many outside viewing assignments connected with these reserve titles.

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CLASS SCHEDULE

Thurs.

Jan. 15

Introduction: Content and the container. Questions of form and structure: Autumn Afternoon

Tues.

Jan. 20

Autumn Afternoon: form, structure, and organization. Have completed the exercise on Autumn Afternoon and bring it to class. (Note that there are five DVD copies on reserve. Budget your time accordingly.)

Thurs.

Jan. 22

Autumn Afternoon

Tues.

Jan. 27

End of Summer

Thurs.

Jan. 29

End of Summer. Complete the exercise on End of Summer.

Tues.

Feb. 3

Late Autumn

Thurs.

Feb. 5

Late Autumn. Complete the exercise on Late Autumn.

Tues.

Feb. 10

Floating Weeds

Thurs.

Feb. 12

Paper due comparing the two versions of Floating Weeds

Floating Weeds

Tues.

Feb. 17

*** No class – Substitute Monday schedule ***

Thurs.

Feb. 19

Have viewed Good Morning outside of class.

Good Morning

Tues.

Feb. 24

Have viewed Equinox Flower outside of class.

Equinox Flower

Thurs.

Feb. 26

Equinox Flower

Tues.

Mar. 3

Tokyo Twilight

Thurs.

Mar. 5

Tokyo Twilight. Paper due.

March

7– 14

*** Spring Break ***

Tues.

Mar. 17

Early Spring

Thurs.

Mar. 19

Early Spring

Tues.

Mar. 24

Have viewed Tokyo Story outside of class.

Tokyo Story

Thurs.

Mar. 26

Tokyo Story

Tues.

Mar. 31

Have viewed Early Summer outside of class.

Thurs.

Apr. 2

Early Summer

Tues.

Apr. 7

Have viewed Late Spring outside of class.

Late Spring

Thurs.

Apr. 9

(Passover) Late Spring

Tues.

Apr. 14

Record of a Tenement Gentleman

Thurs.

Apr. 16

Record of a Tenement Gentleman

Tues.

Apr. 21

Reprise: Floating Weeds (or another title selected by the class for review and re–consideration)

Thurs.

Apr. 23

*** No class – Substitute Monday schedule ***

Tues.

Apr. 28

Reprise: Good Morning (or another title selected by the class for review and re–consideration)

Thurs.

Apr. 30

Conclusions: Content and the container. Questions of form.

=============================================================

The Rules of the Game:

Attendance is required and will be taken. (If you are unable to make a class for an exceptional reason, you must let the T.A. know at least one class prior to the absence and receive permission.) Each absence that is not approved and authorized will result in your final evaluation being lowered.

Promptness is mandatory to avoid disrupting class discussions or screenings. (The light streaming in from opening and closing doors and the noise of finding seats during discussions or screenings is distracting.)

When you enter the classroom, please have already attended to all personal needs (medications, rest room visits, drinks of water, food, need to smoke, cell phone calls or PDA entries, etc.) to avoid distracting other members of the class or yourself. Please note that your presence, attention, and focus is just as important when a film is being screened as it is during a discussion or presentation. Translation: a screening is not a time to go out to make a phone call, check–up on something, meet someone, etc.

I will provide a brief “rest break” at the approximate halfway point in each class in which there is sufficient time to do so.

As noted in the final paragraph below, all electronic devices must be turned off prior to the beginning of class. The policy is dictated not only by the distraction to others from the noise or light (e.g. the ringing of a cell phone or the light from a laptop screen), but by copyright laws regarding the making of unauthorized recordings. (The same prohibitions on the use of electronic devices would apply if you were attending a ballet, a play, a movie, an opera, or any other kind of performance in a theater.)

A note about the absolute importance of screenings. This is a course in artistic appreciation. Its focus is not on criticism, theory, or history, but on the expressive nuances of these specific works of art. Our “texts” for this class are not essays or books or readings about works of art, movements, or periods; but are the films themselves. That means that you should treat every in–class or out–of–class screening with the same intensity of focus and seriousness with which you would treat reading and mastering a textbook chapter about a challenging subject. Devote all of your attention to the artistic text; take notes during the screening; and re–read or review the film (where possible) before and after the class discussion.

You will have two major outside–of–class duties/responsibilities:

1) You are responsible for writing several papers. Topics will be discussed and promulgated during the course of the semester, based on subjects that come up in class discussions (or subjects that we do not have time to deal with adequately in class). No extensions may be given.

2) You are responsible for many outside viewing and writing assignments some of which are already listed on this syllabus, but others of which will be promulgated during specific classes, usually for completion by the next class. Some of these assignments will involve quick turn–arounds. Many will require viewing videos available in Mugar, or writing exercises about them. Some of these exercises will be collected on the day they are due, others will not (and will only be used as the basis of discussion in the class in which they are due). However, whether they are collected or not, all exercises and papers should be retained in a folder and turned in at the end of the semester.

With regard to the preceding duties: Note that the outside viewing schedule and exercise and paper due dates listed on the syllabus are subject to change without notice. If you miss a class, come in late, or leave early, be certain you have contacted the T.A. or another student to familiarize yourself with any changes in the assignments for the subsequent class.

Also please note that this is not a “paperless” course. Material should be submitted and brought to class in hard copy.

Any wit, wisdom, and passion you bring to class discussion will count as “extra credit” to raise your grade. The reverse is also true: Missed classes, tardiness, inattentiveness during classes or screenings, and lackluster class participation will lower your grade.

A general point: Be expressively brave. Use your exercises, papers, and class comments to formulate and test new ideas. Consciousness cannot precede expression. Use class discussion to refine your consciousness.

There will be no mid–term or final exam. Your final evaluation will be based on your class participation and preparation, your written exercises, and your papers. Proportionally, half of your grade will be based on your papers and the other half will be based on your exercises and in–class performance.

========================================================

Yasujiro Ozu (1903–1963)

FILMOGRAPHY

(Taken from Imdb.com –– in reverse chronological order)

1. Sanma no aji (1962)
... aka An Autumn Afternoon (USA)
... aka The Taste of Saury (Japan: informal literal English title)
2. Kohayagawa-ke no aki (1961)
... aka Autumn for the Kohayagawa Family (literal English title)
... aka Early Autumn
... aka The End of Summer (International: English title)
... aka The Last of Summer
3. Akibiyori (1960)
... aka Late Autumn (USA)
4. Ukigusa (1959)
... aka Drifting Weeds
... aka Floating Weeds (USA)
5. Ohayô (1959)
... aka Good Morning (International: English title)
... aka Ohayo (Japan: alternative transliteration)
... aka Yasujiro Ozu's Good Morning (USA)
6. Higanbana (1958)
... aka Equinox Flower
7. Tôkyô boshoku (1957)
... aka Tokyo Twilight
... aka Twilight in Tokyo
8. Soshun (1956)
... aka Early Spring (USA)
9. Tôkyô monogatari (1953)
... aka Tokyo Story (USA)
10. Ochazuke no aji (1952)
... aka Flavor of Green Tea Over Rice (USA)
... aka Tea Over Rice (USA)
... aka Tea and Rice
11. Bakushû (1951)
... aka Early Summer
12. Munekata kyoudai (1950)
... aka The Munekata Sisters (International: English title)
13. Banshun (1949)
... aka Late Spring
14. Kaze no naka no mendori (1948)
... aka A Hen in the Wind
15. Nagaya shinshiroku (1947)
... aka The Record of a Tenement Gentleman
16. Chichi ariki (1942)
... aka There Was a Father
17. Todake no kyodai (1941)
... aka The Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family
... aka The Toda Brothers and Sisters
18. Shukujo wa nani o wasureta ka (1937)
... aka What Did the Lady Forget?
19. Hitori musuko (1936)
... aka The Only Son
20. Daigaku yoitoko (1936)
... aka College Is a Nice Place
... aka Tokyo Is a Nice Place
21. Kagamijishi (1936)
... aka Kikugoro no kagamijishi (Japan: long title)
22. Tokyo no yado (1935)
... aka An Inn in Tokyo
23. Hakoiri musume (1935)
... aka An Innocent Maid
... aka The Young Virgin
24. Ukikusa monogatari (1934)
... aka A Story of Floating Weeds
... aka Ukigusa monogatari (Japan: alternative transliteration)
25. Haha wo kowazuya (1934)
... aka A Mother Should Be Loved
26. Dekigokoro (1933)
... aka Passing Fancy
27. Hijosen no onna (1933)
... aka Dragnet Girl
... aka Women on the Firing Line
28. Tokyo no onna (1933)
... aka Woman of Tokyo
29. Mata au hi made (1932)
... aka Until the Day We Meet Again
30. Seishun no yume imaizuko (1932)
... aka Where Are the Dreams of Youth?
... aka Where Now Are the Dreams of Youth
31. Otona no miru ehon - Umarete wa mita keredo (1932)
... aka Children of Tokyo (USA)
... aka I Was Born, But... (International: English title)
... aka Umarete wa mita keredo (Japan: short title)
32. Haru wa gofujin kara (1932)
... aka Spring Comes from the Ladies
33. Tokyo no kôrasu (1931)
... aka Tokyo Chorus
... aka Tokyo no gassho (Japan: alternative transliteration)
34. Bijin aishu (1931)
... aka Beauty's Sorrows
35. Shukujo to hige (1931)
... aka The Lady and Her Favorite
... aka The Lady and the Beard
36. Ojosan (1930)
... aka Young Miss
37. Ashi ni sawatta koun (1930)
... aka Lost Luck
... aka Luck Touched My Legs
... aka The Luck Which Touched the Leg
38. Erogami no onryo (1930)
... aka The Revengeful Spirit of Eros
39. Rakudai wa shita keredo (1930)
... aka I Flunked But...
40. Hogaraka ni ayume (1930)
... aka Walk Cheerfully
41. Kekkongaku nyumon (1930)
... aka Introduction to Marriage
42. Sono yo no tsuma (1930)
... aka That Night's Wife
43. Tokkan kozo (1929)
... aka A Straightforward Boy
44. Daigaku wa deta keredo (1929)
... aka I Graduated But...
45. Wasei kenka tomodachi (1929)
... aka Fighting Friends
... aka Fighting Friends: Japanese Style
46. Gakusei romance: Wakaki hi (1929)
... aka Days of Youth
47. Kaishain seikatsu (1929)
... aka The Life of an Office Worker
48. Takara no yama (1929)
... aka Treasure Mountain
49. Nikutaibi (1928)
... aka Body Beautiful
50. Hikkoshi fufu (1928)
... aka A Couple on the Move
51. Kabocha (1928)
... aka Pumpkin
52. Nyobo funshitsu (1928)
... aka Wife Lost
53. Wakodo no yume (1928)
... aka Dreams of Youth
54. Zange no yaiba (1927)
... aka Sword of Penitence

*************************************************************************************

Spring 2009
COM FT 554 E1
Film Studies Special Topic
The Films of Yasujiro Ozu
Mr. Carney

Exercise #1: In place of plot, what creates structure and organization?

For convenience of reference, let me define the first seventeen scenes of Autumn Afternoon as having the following approximate starting points (based on the time count of the DVD in our collection):

2:00 –– in Mr. Hirayama’s office
6:30 –– in a restaurant, Mr. Hirayama, Prof. Horie, and Mr. Kawai hold a “reunion”
13:30 –– Hirayama at home with Kazu and Michiko
16:00 –– in Koichi’s (Mr. Hirayama’s oldest son’s) home
18:30 –– in Mr. Kawai’s office
20:30 –– in a restaurant, a reunion for “the Gourd”
26:00 –– cab stops at the Noodle Shop and Mr. Hirayama and Mr. Kawai drop off “the Gourd” at his home
30:00 –– Mr. Hirayama and Mr. Kawai in a restaurant, Mr. Horie arrives
34:00 –– Mr. Hirayama visits the Noodle Shop
40:30 –– Mr. Hirayama and Sakamoto are in another restaurant
44:00 –– Mr. Hirayama comes home to his daughter Michiko and his two sons, Kazu and Koichi
47:00 –– the apartment building Koichi and his wife live in: his wife borrows tomatoes and he arrives with golf clubs
51:00 –– the driving range
53:00 –– back in Koichi’s apartment; Michiko visits; Miura arrives
60:00 –– train platform
103 –– back in Mr. Hirayama’s office
105 –– back in the restaurant with Mr. Hirayama, Mr. Kawai, and “the Gourd”
109 –– Mr. Hirayama back at home

Plot, as it occurs in American movies, provides almost automatic structure. There are goals for characters to set; tasks for them to perform; and obstacles for them to overcome. Ozu’s work is organized in a fundamentally different way. Describe its structure and organization by listing the “function” of each of the above scenes.

Due at the start of class, Tuesday, January 20. Two to four pages, double–spaced.

*************************************************************************************

FOR ALL COURSES:

COLLEGE OF COMMUNICATION STATEMENT ON PLAGIARISM

Plagiarism is the act of representing someone else's creative and/or academic work as your own, in full or in part. It can be an act of commission, in which one intentionally appropriates the words, pictures or ideas of another, or it can be an act of omission, in which one fails to acknowledge/document/give credit to the source, creator and/or the copyright owner of those words, pictures or ideas. Any fabrication of materials, quotes, or sources, other than that created in a work of fiction, is also plagiarism.

Each student is responsible for performing all of his or her own work. All quotations, paraphrases, or borrowings from others (whether they originally appeared in printed, broadcast, or oral sources) must be formally acknowledged in a footnote or citation. If you are in doubt, be certain you acknowledge or explain the borrowing or indebtedness at the time the work is submitted.

Plagiarism is the most serious academic offense that you can commit and can result in probation, suspension or expulsion.

(An addition by Prof. Carney: Plagiarism also occurs when you borrow or recycle written or spoken statements made by other teachers or classmates in your own spoken or written statements. If your spoken or written observations in this class borrow from someone else’s comments, papers, or ideas – a teacher’s in another course, a classmate’s, a friend’s, or a stranger’s – whether spoken or written, be sure to acknowledge that fact. Beyond being moral and honest, it is only fair and honorable to “give credit where credit is due.”)

POLICY ON RECORDINGS DURING CLASS

Please note that, due to copyright laws, privacy regulations, the need to minimize the distraction from ambient sounds and ancillary activities, and general classroom policies, the use of electronic or mechanical recording devices (including laptop computers and cell phones) is not allowed in the classroom, the viewing booth, or any other spaces connected with the classroom or screening area, except with the instructor's explicit, advance written permission on specific dates and times. And note that even if permission to record a classroom discussion is granted, pre–recorded video or film screenings, soundtracks, or music are still not allowed to be recorded, since this would violate the creator’s, performer’s, or owner’s copyright. Finally, note that any mechanical or electronic recording created, even with the above permission, is strictly for the private use of the individual requesting it and may not be played in public, broadcast, listened to by, or otherwise used by anyone other than the individual who requested it.


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© Text Copyright 2009 by Ray Carney. All rights reserved. May not be reprinted without written permission of the author.