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December 1995, Week 3


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Gloria Monti <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Sun, 17 Dec 1995 19:59:39 -0500
text/plain (64 lines)
> I would be very interested, therefore (and most grateful!), to hear any and
> suggestions about texts to use, approaches to take (historical?  genre?
> director?), and films to show.  The books I used this semester - ordered by
> previous instructor - were "Understanding Movies" by Giannetti and "A History
> Narrative Film" by Cook.  While I learned a lot, as I said, I wonder if these
> are the best available.  What else is out there?  I would be especially
> interested in books particularly about film analysis.
        I taught Close Analysis last Spring and these are my
suggestions.  I put together a reading packet of close analysis
articles rather than assigning a general book on film.  The students
should come to a class like close analysis with the background of an
intro, course.  The seminar I taught was junior level and a requirement
for the major.  I see Close Analysis situated between Intro. to FilmSt
and Film Theory--assuming knowledge coming from one class and looking
ahead to the other.  It;s a kind of hand-on theory workshop, to enable
students to *think* theoretically, so that they weill be better equipped
to read the big girls&guys in Film Theory.
        My selection of films was dictated by the close analysis essays
available--therefore the films took a second turn to the readings, or if
you will, the films became the visual space to address the readings.
        I recommend: *Psycho* with Bellour's "Psychosis, Neurosis, Perversion"
        *La Chinoise* with Aumont's "This Is not a Textual Analysis"
        *The Birds* with Bergstrom's "Enunciation and Sexual Difference"
        (Alternatives with their respective readings: *The Pirate,* *Touch
of Evil.*)
        I also chose a director to study closely as a case study; I
picked Godard (5 weeks).
        Then I branched out into films that were not "classical" close
analysis texts but that came with an acceptable close analysis
        *Il Conformista* with Wagstaff's "Forty-Seven Shots of
Bertolucci's Il Conformista"
        *Blow-Up* with Eberwein's "The Master Text of *Blow-Up*" and
Linderman's "Narrative Surplus: The 'Blow-Up as Metarepresentation and
        *Banshun,* with Thompson's "*Late Spring,* and Ozu's Unreasonable Style"
        Lastly, each week I would assign a theoretical piece that would
discuss the issue of close readings of film texts.  Some examples:
        Bellour, "The Obvious and the Code"
        Barthes, "The Death of the Author"
        Staiger, "Reception Studies: The Death of the Reader"
        Bordwell, "Why Not to Read a Film"
        Thompson, "Neoformalist Film Analysis: One Approach, Many Methods"
        Bordwell, "Towards Intrinsic Norms"
        Metz, "Story/Discourse"
        I will make my syllabus available, if you are interested in this
        Gloria Monti
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